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The history of Galashiels 

Robert Hall, Galashiels Manufacturers' Corporation 




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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



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Of this Volume 425 Copies have been printed, of 

WHICH THIS IS No. 




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THE 



l)t$torp of 6ala$l)iel 



BY 

/ 
ROBERT HALL 



|^ul>li9be^ un&er tbe auspices of 
Ube (Salasbield Aanufacturers' Corporation. 



ALEXANDER WALKER & SON, PUBLISHERS. 

1898. 



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Printed by A. Walker &' Sotiy Galashiels, 



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PREFACE. 

The modern portion of Galashiels being practically a 
growth of the Victorian Era, it may be assumed that ample 
information regarding its history would be readily accessible, 
and that the selection of fitting material, rather than the pro- 
curing of it, would prove the more difficult task. This, however, 
is not the case. So far as the earlier half of the present century 
is concerned, little of an authentic nature is to be found Oral 
testimony and tradition are equally unreliable, and records 
of any description are extremely scarce. 

To many much of the subject-matter may appear trivial and 
uninteresting; yet little details, which, through familiarity, may 
seem superfluous to present-day readers, will, in all probability, 
o appear in a difi^erent light to their successors, for whose infor- 

mation they have been placed on record. 

With the view of presenting a narrative as continuous and 
connected as possible, the work has been divided into sections. 
These embody all the available information bearing upon the 
civic, ecclesiastical, industrial, educational, and other relations in 
the town's history. 

While collecting material for the work the author has to 
acknowledge the unvarying courtesy and kindness he received 
from all he had occasion to approach. In this connection the 
names of Mr Nenion Elliot, S.S.C., Clerk of Teinds, Edinburgh, 
and Mr David McB. Watson, Hawick, are entitled to special 
mention. 

The following gentlemen have also rendered valuable assist- 
ance in reading for the press, viz., — Mr James Smail, Edinburgh; 
Mr John McQueen and Mr James L. Anderson, Galashiels. 

Acknowledgment has also to be made to Mr Nicholas 
Dickson, editor of the Border Magazine^ Glasgow, for the use 
of the plate of Abbotsford in 1812; Mr Balmain, photographer, 



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Edinburgh, for copy of portrait of Dr Doug-las; Mr Andrew 
Elliot, publisher, Princes Street, Edinburgh, for photograph of 
Dr Nathaniel Paterson; Mr James Sanderson, Woodlands, for 
the use of the originals of the views of the town; and to 
Mr Donald G. Stalker for the sketch of Lindean Kirkyard. 

The author trusts the volume will prove of interest to the 
general reader, and more especially to townsmen who cherish 
the traditions and associations that cluster round the place of 
their abode. He also hopes it will be of service in fostering a 
greater interest in the minds of the young and rising generation 
belonging to Galashiels regarding the origin and history of the 
place of their birth. 

October, 1898. ROBERT HALL. 



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CONTENTS. 



Section I. — History of Galashiels, 
Section II. — Ecclesiastical, 
Section III. — Industrial, 
Section IV. — Educational, ... 
Section V. — Banks and Bankers, 
Section VI. — Miscellaneous, 
Chronological List of Events, 1846 to 1896, 
List of Subscribers, 





Page. 


... 


1-162 


... 


165-267 


... ••• •. 


... 271-445 




... 449-478 


... 


... 481-497 


••• ••• ••• 


- 501-575 


1896, 


••• 577-580 


... 


... 581-587 



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LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS AND MAPS. 



Galashiels in 1845, 

Arms and Motto of Galashiels, ... 

Map of Galashiels in 1795, 

Map of Galashiels in 1824, 

Map of Galashiels in 1 85 1, 

Galashiels in 1855, 

Chief Magistrates, — G. Craig, W. Rutherford, J. Cochrane, 

G. Bathgate, W. Haldane, 
Provosts, — ^J. Hall, W. Laidlaw, A. Brown, J. Dickson, J. Dun. 
Lindean Kirkyard, 
Parish Ministers, — Dr Douglas, Dr Paterson, Dr Veitch, Dr 

Phin, Dr Gloag, 
Abbotsford in 1812, 
Dissenting Ministers, — Dr Blair, J. Spence, Dr Henderson, 

W. W. Smith, R. Blackstock, 
Flag of Weavers' Corporation, ... 
Flag of Manufacturers* Corporation, 
Manufacturers, — G. Paterson, W. Cochrane, J. Sime, R. 

Sanderson, J. Sanderson, 
' Flag of Dyers' Corporation, 
Manufacturers, — H. Sanderson, G. Lees, D. Thomson, W. 

Brown, A. Watson, 
Manufacturers, — P. Sanderson, A. Cochrane, A. Dickson, 

H. Roberts, and J. Murray, 
Schoolmasters, — R. Fyshe, A. Williamson, T. Fairley, T. Bain, 

W. Dunlop, 
Bankers, — R. Haldane, J. Pringle, H. Lees, R. Stewart, J. Smail, 
Letter to Dr Douglas in 1793, 
Volunteers, — Captain Clark, Captain Cochrane, Captain Siine, 

Captain Brown, Captain Fairbairn, 
Doctors, — R. Weir, G. McDougall, A. Tweedie, R. Somerville, 

J. Menzies, 
Portraits,— T. Roberts, J. Grant, J. Stalker, J. Bell, W. 

Sanderson, 
Mercat Cross, Galashiels, 



Page, 
Frontispiece, 
I 
To face page 76 
,, 100 



126 
128 

«34 

165 

200 
206 

244 
280 
296 

334 
376 

382 
414 

454 
482 

515 
532 

538 

562 
575 



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BOOKS OF REFERENCE. 



The author has to acknowledg^e his indebtedness to t\ 
following sources of information, — 

Exchequer Rolls of Scotland. 

Chancery Miscellaneous Portfolios. 

Privy Council Records. 

Origines Parochiales Scotiae, and other works, by Cosmo Innes. 

Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanse — Scott. 

Pictures of Scotland — Chambers. 

Domestic Annals of Scotland — Chambers. 

Pitcairn's Criminal Trials. 

The Old Statistical Account — Dr Douglas. 

General View of Agriculture in Roxburgh and Selkirk Shires — Dr Douglas 

The Monastic Annals of Teviotdale — Morton. 

Caledonia — Chalmers. 

Redpath's Border History. I 

Lord Haile*s Annals. ! 

Session Records of Galashiels Parish Church. 

Session Records of Melrose Parish Church. 

Heritors' Records, Galashiels Parish. 

History of Roxburghshire — ^Jeifery. 

Records of the Kirk of Scotland — Peterkin. 

The Industries of Scotland — Bremner. 

The New Statistical Account — Rev. N. Paterson. 

Minute Book of the Weavers' Corporation. 

Minute Book of the Manufacturers' Corporation 

Minute Book of the Dyers* Corporation. 

Ecclesiastical Notes on Parish of Galashiels— Very Rev. Paton J. Gloag, D.D. 

Acts of Scottish Parliaments. 

The British Chronicle from 1783 to 1797. 

The Kelso Mail from 1798 to 1847. 

The Border Advertiser from 1848 to 1896. 

The Scottish Border Record from 1881 to 1896. 

The Scotsman, various dates from 18 16. 

Records of the Burgh of Galashiels from 1850 to 1896. 

Lockhart's Life of Scott. 

Liber de Mailros. 

Reports of Historical Manuscripts Commission. 

MSS., various dates since 1581. 

The Unpublished Annals of the Parish — Henry Sanderson. 

Gazetteer of Scotland — Fullarton. 



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SECTION I.— HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



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ARMS AND MOTTO OF THE TOWN OF GALASHIELS. 



CHAPTER I. 

THE town of Galashiels, unlike most of the towns on the 
Scottish Border, has little or no ancient history; it in- 
herits no proud traditions of heroic deeds performed by 
its sons; legend and song are nearly alike silent concerning it. 

Occupying one of the passes leading between the Southern 
Highlands and the Lowland plains, there is little recorded re- 
garding the part it played in the stirring annals of the Bor- 
derland. It possesses no archives, no musty charters from 
William the Lion, or David of church-building memory ; no 
broad acres or wide-spreading commons, in defence of which its 
inhabitants could be called upon to peril life or limb. 

Only a century ago Galashiels was but an obscure country 
village situated on a steep hillside. Hidden among the hills, 
its existence was scarcely known outside the pastoral valley in 
which its sons founded a habitation and a name. As a town, it 
is the architect of its own fortunes, owing its birth and progress 
to the energy and perseverance of those who planted their spin- 
ning mills on the banks of the Gala, discerning the value of 
the power possessed by that classic stream. 



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2 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The name Galashiels is said to be derived from the British 
gwala (the full stream), and the Saxon shiel (or shelter) 
— the shiels or shelters on the banks of the Gala, used by the 
keepers of the forest, hunters, and shepherds. These erections 
would be of the rudest description, owing to their liability to 
be destroyed in the frequent hostile incursions from across the 
Border. 

The name has been subjected to a variety of spellings, 
amongst which occur the following, — Galuscheil, Gallowschel, 
Galowayscheelis, Galwschelis, Galloschelis, Gallaschelis, Gal- 
lowscheillis, Gallowschelis, Gallowsheills, Gallowshields, Gala- 
sheels, Gallosheiles, Gallascheiles, Galasheills, Galashields, &c. 

The Scottish Border counties afford many examples of places 
called shiels, but none of them has expanded into a town like the 
shiels on the banks of the Gala. Foulshiels, the birth-place 
of Mungo Park, and Cauldshiels, adjoining Abbotsford, are 
familiar examples. So many of the old villages have now dis- 
appeared that the name shiels is frequently found attached to 
farm houses and the solitary dwellings of shepherds, these being 
all that remain to mark the spot they once occupied. 

In a charter granted by David I. to the Monks of Melrose, 
Gala is spelt Galchcy and again in a charter by William the Lion, 
Galue. In the Liber de Mailros^ mention of the Gala frequently 
occurs. During the reign of Alexander III. it appears to have 
1268 changed its course, as on the 13th April, 1268, Simon Eraser, 
Sheriif of Traquair, and others, were directed to pass to the lands 
adjoining the **Galu," and inquire how far, according to its **new 
course," the possessions of the Abbot and convent of Melrose 
were affected. 

As the haugh upon which Galashiels is built is the 
only part in the valley of the Gala which belonged to the Abbey 
lands, there can be little doubt that this reference applies 
to the site of the older portion of the town. The natural con- 
figuration of the locality warrants the assumption that, at some 
remote period, the stream must have flowed more to the south 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

than it does at the present day. From Kilnknowe to Nether 
dale the scaur, formed by the action of the water, still remains ir 
the form of a steep wooded bank, except at such places where ii 
has been interfered with in connection with the building of the 
town. Therefore, as the Abbey lands in the locality were 
bounded on the south by the Gala, this alteration in its course 
would affect nearly all the haugh, upon which the lower portion 
of the town is built. 

The summit of Gala Hill, at the base of which the original 
village nestled, is called Gorgum, and is supposed to be the 
place mentioned in Blind Harry's Wallace as Gorkhelm, where 
Cospatrick, Earl of Dunbar, entrenched himself against a 

1296 threatened attack by the Scottish patriot in 1296. j 

I 

*' Erll Patrik than, in all haist can him speid, 1 

And passit by, or Wallace power rais; j 

With out restyngf, in Atrik forrest gais, 
Wallace folowed, hot he wald nocht assaill: 
A rang to mak as than it mycht nocht waill: 
Our few he had^ the strenth was thick and strong, 
Vij myill on breid, and tharto twys so long, 
In till Gorkhelm Erll Patrik leiffit at rest. 
For more power Wallace past in the west." 

The rival armies had previously met in Haddingtonshire, where 
Cospatrick had suffered defeat. Fleeing into Berwickshire, he 
advanced westward by Norham and Coldstream, but, according 
to the above quotation, before Wallace could bring forward the 
main body of his army, his opponent hurriedly made his way into 
Ettrick Forest. Wallace followed him, but, finding, from his 
numerical inferiority and the impenetrable nature of the district, 
that no advantage was to be gained by making an attack at that 
time, he went into the west for the purpose of procuring 
assistance, while Cospatrick entrenched himself in Gorkhelm, 
where he rested in security. 

1337 The earliest mention of Galuschel in history occurs in 1337 

in the following quotation from Scalacrontca, — 



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4 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

** The marchers of England hering of the sege of Edenburge, cam to rescue 
it: so that the [Scots] cam thens to Clerkington and the Englischmenne cam 
to Krethtoun, where betwixt them and the Scottes was a great fighte, and 
many slayne on both parties. Then the Scottes made as they wold go yn to 
England, and lodged themself at Galuschel and the Englische went over 
Twede." 

In connection with this retreat of the English, the origin of 
the town's arms is said to have arisen. These at present consist 
of a plum tree with a fox on each side, and the motto 
'^Sour Plums.'* Tradition affirms that a party of the English 
army, suspecting no danger, straggled from the main body, and 
began to gather the wild plums that grew in profusion in the 
locality. While so engaged, they were surprised by the Scots, 
who fell upon them and cut them oif to a man, their bodies 
being thrown into a trench situated in the Eastlands, which is 
termed the *' Englishman's syke" to the present day. In com- 
memoration of this exploit, the inhabitants of the village, who 
may have taken part in the skirmish, adopted the sarcastic title 
of the *^ Sour plums of Galashiels." 

In a volume recently published, entitled The Amis of the 
Royal and Parliamentary Burghs of Scotland, it is stated that 
the arms of the town are not recorded in the Lyon Office, 
and it is considered probable that the design had its origin 
in connection with the fable of the fox and grapes. Some 
colour is supposed to be given to this surmise on account of the 
design of the Burgh seal being a vine with fruit and two foxes. 

Little or no weight can be attached to this circumstance, as 
the seal is of modern origin, having been procured in 1868. 
The want of uniformity between it and the town's arms may be 
simply accounted for by assuming that the official who gave 
instructions regarding the design of the seal may have been 
more familiar with the fable of the fox and grapes, which he 
probably imagined the town's arms represented, than with the 
ancient history of the town. Acting under the belief that the 
plurki tree should have been a vine, he appears to have given 
such instructions to the engraver as to account for this departure 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 5 

from the proper design. Even the volume in question affords 
an example of how such innovations are made. It describes 
the town's arms as being, in the language of heraldry, 

**On a mount a plum tree fructed, between two foxes; that on the 
dexter statant, and that on the sinister segant." 

The engraving shows the plum tree elevated on a mound, 
which is a departure from any representation of the town's arms 
hitherto published, and is even at variance with the illustration 
from which, it is stated, the design was derived. 

It is also probable that the introduction of the foxes has been 
effected in a similar manner. This view is supported by a 
reference to the design of the town's arms, contained in the 
following extract from a manuscript written in the earlier years 
of the present century, by the late Mr Elliot Anderson, writer, 
from which it appears at that date only one fox was repre- 
sented, 

'* It is therefore a mistake to make the coat of arms as they at present 
are, * The Tod and Plurti Tree,' which is evidently taken from the fable of the 
fox and grapes. The arms should be simply a plum tree fruited, with the 
motto, *Sour Plums.'" 

There can be little doubt that this view of the subject is 
the correct one. These departures from the original design 
have in all probability been carried into effect by persons who 
were in ignorance regarding the tradition from which the town's 
arms originated. 

The **Sour Plums of Galashiels" were celebrated in an old 
song, the words of which are lost, though the tune remains. 
There is a manuscript journal extant, written by Alexander 
Campbell, editor of Aldyn's Anthology^ who visited the Borders 
in 1816 for the purpose of collecting local tunes. This journal 
contains notices of the best Border pipers of the eighteenth 
century, taken down from the conversation of Mr Thomas Scott 
(uncle of Sir Walter Scott), who was himself a skilful performer 
on the Lowland, or bellows, pipes, one of those referred to being 



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6 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

*' Donald Maclean, piper at Galashiels, who was a capital piper, and the 
only one who could play on the pipe the old popular tune of the * Sour Plums 
of Galashiels,' it requiring a peculiar art of pinching the back hole of the 
chanter with the thumb to produce the higher notes of the melody in question. 
Donald Maclean was the father of the well-known William Maclean, dancing 
master, Edinburgh, and died about the middle of last century. Richard Lees, 
manufacturer in Galashiels, has the said William Maclean's bagpipes in his 
possession." 

In the works of Hamilton of Bangour occurs an unfinished 
mock heroic poem entitled **The Maid of Galoshiels." The 
scene is laid at a Galashiels fair, the principal characters being 
a piper and fiddler, whom, in presence of the ** maids, widows, 
wives, and matrons of Galoshiels,'* the piper accuses of abusing 
the laws of hospitality by supplanting him in the affections 
of the frail and fickle '^Elspet," the maid in question. According 
to Cromek, the piper referred to in the poem was the above 
Donald Maclean, who, in the beginning of last century, 
acted as piper to Sir James Scott of Gala. It is stated by 
Robert Burns that Maclean was the author of the air called 
**Gallashiels.*' This tune, however, is only a variation, written 
upon a lower key, of the old- tune the ** SowV Plumbs of Gallow 
Shiels," and published for the first time in Orpheus Caledonius, in 
1725. The earliest allusion to the song, or air, **Sour Plums 
of Galashiels,*' is found in an old version of *^Gala Water,'' 
quoted elsewhere; and it appears from internal evidence to have 
been in existence in 1632, but how much earlier cannot be 
determined. The opinion is held that these tunes are identical, 
and that the title ''Sour Plums of Galashiels " is only another 
or fuller name for the tune '* Gallashiels,'* said to be composed 
by Maclean. According to the above quotation regarding 
Maclean's ability to play the *'old popular tune," he would not 
have been referred to in these terms had he been the composer. 
Doubtless, the fact, if it were so, would be known to 
Thomas Scott, who may have been intimate with him in his 
younger days. 

Thomas Scott died in 1823, aged ninety, and it is stated by 
Sir Walter Scott that his uncle, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 7 

'* Beings a great musician on the Scotch pipes, had, when on his death- 
bed, a favourite tune played over to him by his son James, that he might be 
sure he left him in full possession of it. After hearing it, he hummed it over 
himself, and corrected it in several of the notes. The air was that called 
' Sour Plums of Galashiels.' " « 

With reference to this instance of the ruling passion strong 
in death, Ruskin thus writes, — 

''No occasion for death-bed repentance, you perceive, on the part of this 
old gentleman, no particular care even for the disposition of his handsome 
independence ; but here is a bequest of which one must see one's son in 
full possession ; here's a thing to be well looked after before setting out for 
heaven, that the tune of * Sour Plums of Galashiels ' may still be played on 
earth in an incorrupt manner, and no damnable French or English variations 
intruded upon the solemn and authentic melody thereof." 

The lands and manor of Galashiels formed part of Ettrick 
Forest, and originally belonged to the Crown, being granted in 
1 32 1 to Sir James Douglas by Robert Bruce. The boundaries 
of this famous forest were enlarged at various times, and latterly 
comprised an irregular tract of country containing that portion 
of the Tweed and its tributaries extending from Langlee to the 
neighbourhood of Traquair; this area included the Ettrick, 
Yarrow, Caddon, and their tributaries, and a small portion of the 
Gala, commencing near Blindlee, to its junction with the Tweed. 
Its greatest length extended from Buckholmhill to Ettrick Pen, 
and its widest part lay between the source of Caddon water and 
the neighbourhood of Ashkirk. The following description of it 
applies to the olden time, when the Stewart line sat upon the 
Scottish throne. 

** Ettricke Foreste is a fair foreste ; 

In it grows many a semelie tree — 
There's hart and hind, and dae and rae. 

And of a' wilde bestis grete plentie. " 

1416 In 1416a dispute arose 

" Betwixt the Religouse men, the Abbot and the C6u€t of Melrose on the 
ta. pte. and ane honorabil Sqwhair, John the Hage, lorde of Bemerside, 
on the tothir. pte. for Erig of a certain pece of land within thair maynis of 
Redpeth, foment the maynis of Bemerside beforsaide, the qwhilk the 
said John claymis, suld be comon to bathe the forsaide places." 



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8 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

With a view to the settlement of this controversy, *^Arche- 
balde, Erie of Douglas, lorde of Galway and Anandail,*' wrote a 
letter addressed **til alle ye sonys of oure hali modir ye Kirk." 
This epistle was intended to promote ** frenschippe, vnite, and 
gude Concorde betwix ptyes discordand," and was **gywin vnder 
oure sealle at 'Gallowscher the xvij. day of the moneth of 
Decemb, the yhere of G'ce Mi.CCCC. and the XVJ." As the 
old house of Gala was not erected at that date, it is surmised that 
the building, or tower, occupied by the Douglases, stood a few 
hundred yards more to the south, where the remains of an 
ancient building are still to be traced, the origin of which is 
unknown. 

About 1408, Robert Hoppringle of Whitsome, in Berwick- 
shire, obtained from Archibald, Earl of Douglas, a tack of the 
Forest steadings of Galashiels and Mossilee. Robert Hoppringle 
had been shield-bearer to James, the second Earl of Douglas, 
who was killed at the battle of Otterburn in 1388. Acting in 
the same capacity for Archibald, the fourth Earl, he accompanied 
him to France, where they both fell at the battle of Verneuil in 
1424. After the forfeiture of the Douglases in 1445, the family 
continued kindly tenants under the Crown till 1566, when 
Queen Mary granted them the lands in feu. These tacks were 
for a limited period, but were usually granted to the same 
family, who were thus described in some of the old feu charters, — 

** Thay and their forbeiris hed been auld and kyndlie possessours and few 
rentallaris past memorie of man.'* 

The village of Galashiels in those days would, in all proba- 
bility, consist of a cluster of rude cottages, having no importance, 
consequently almost nothing is recorded in history concerning it. 
1442 An entry in the Exchequer Rolls, dated 17th July, 1442, states 
that £$ was paid to Mr Nicolas, carpenter, for his expenses and 
those of his servitor, for riding at the command of the King to 
**Galowayscheelis*' in the Forest regarding the carriage of the 
King's great bombard. For what particular reason a piece of 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. g 

ordnance of that nature was to be found at Galashiels 
must remain a matter for conjecture. Bombards for siege 
operations were introduced by James I., who, in 1430, brought 
from Flanders a great brass bombard which bore the name of the 
Lion. This piece of ordnance did duty at the siege of Roxburgh 
in 1460, where James II. met his death by the bursting of one 
of the cannons employed in the investment of that fortress. 
1457 In 1457 the original portion of Gala House was built by the 

wife of Robert, the second Hoppringill of Galashiels, having, 
it is said, this inscription cut on the doorway, — 

" Elspeth Dishington builted me, 
In syn lye not; 
The things thou can'st not get 
Desyre not." 

There is a sculptured stone, which belonged to the old building, 
now built into the wall of the St John Street lodge, dated 1583, 
which may refer to the date of the first addition to the old peel by 
Andro Pringill, who had evidently not long survived its erection, 
as in the family burial place in Melrose Abbey the following 
epitaph is still to be seen, — 

" Heir leis ane honorabil man, Andro Pringill, feuar of Gallowschiels, 
quha decessit ye 28 of February, An. Dom. 1585." 

A second stone, dated 161 2, built into the wall of the game- 
keeper's dwelling, celebrated the chief addition to the house, 
other portions having been added subsequently; and it 
continued to be the home of the Scotts of Gala till 1876, when, 
in order to provide ground for the extension of the town, the new 
mansion house was erected. The old building was acquired by 
Mr Andrew H. Herbertson, builder, who changed its name to 
Beechwood. 

Tradition affirms that when the kings of Scotland took 

their pleasure in the Forest, they occupied a hunting lodge at 

Galashiels, which was named the *^ Hunter's Ha*. " Colour is 

1463 given to the belief by a record, dated ist February, 1463, when 



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lo HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

at ^^Galwschelis*' the King confirmed to William de Douglas 
de Cluny and Lord of ^^Trakware/' certain lands in the county 
of Peebles. 

Reference bearing upon this tradition is made by Tennant, 
in his description of a Scottish tour which he made in 1772, as 
follows, — 

** We have now crossed the water, and are in the county of Selkirk, or 
the Forest of Ettrick, which was fornierly reserved l^ the Scottish princes for 
the pleasure of the chase, and where they had small houses for the reception 
of their train. One in Gala Shields, the adjoining village, still keeps the name 
ofthe 'Hunter's Hall.'" 

In 1467, at the Beltane court, the King is found remitting 
fines incurred by a smith, and other inhabitants of Galoschelis, 
Moysilee, and Blyndlee. In 1485 the **foglammys" of Galo- 
schelis, Moysilee, Blyndlee, and Magalt were rented by Queen 
Margaret of Denmark, wife of James III,, for pasturing sheep, 
with the right to have **schelis.*' 
1503 In 1503 the lands and manor of Galashiels formed part of the 

dower of Margaret Tudor, daughter of Henry VII. of England, 
and wife of James IV. of Scotland, in whose favour sasine was 
given by John Murray of Fawlohyll, Sheriff of Selkirk, on the soil 
of the said lordship, near the tower and manor of "Galloschelis." 

15 13 In 1 5 13 occurred the disastrous battle of Flodden, 

** Where shivered was fair Scotland's spear, 
And broken was her shield." 

This memorable defeat carried woe and lamentation into many a 
Border home. In that fatal fight David Pringle of Galashiels 
fell, along, it is said, with four of his sons, and, without doubt, a 
number of the villagers would lay down their lives in the same 
cause. Regarding this famous episode in Scottish history, local 
tradition is silent; but this was no ordinary occasion, and all the 
inhabitants of the village capable of bearing arms would play 
their part in that deadly struggle, where **The flowers o' the 
Forest were a' wede away." 



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CHAPTER II. 

THE pacification of the Borders and the extinction of the 
old-established practice of plundering occupied a large 
portion of the time of the Scottish Privy Council. The 
proclamations and obligations to abandon the old reiving habits, 
and prosecutions for relapsing into them, are worthy of being 
perused for the revelation they afford of the inner life of the 
Borders at this period. While there happened to be a truce 
between the two countries it was illegal for the Scottish 
Borderers to make raids into England. At the same time it was 
hardly politic to crush their oflFensive capacities, since, in the 
event of a war taking place, a powerful help was rendered by 
these same men. 

Old **Satchells'' refers to them as being 

** Somewhat unruly and very ill to tame, 

I would have none think that I call them thieves ; 
For if I did, it would be arrant lies ; 

For all Frontiers^, and Borders, I observe, 
Wherever they ly, are Free-booters, 
And does the enemy much more harms. 
Than five thousand marshall-men in arms." 

1548 On the 14th of April, 1548, an incident happened in the 

locality which was of rare occurrence in Border history. George 
Hoppringill of Torwoodlee had to find security that he would 
underlie the law, being charged with affording treasonable 
assistance to *^our ancient enemies of England," giving and 
taking assurance from them, and for other crimes contained in 
his letters. On the 5th June following, Robert Hoppringill of 
Blyndley and five others found the laird of Torwoodlee as 
surety that they would underlie the law at the next aire of 
Selkirk for the same offence, and also for keeping the house of 
Bukhame, belonging to James Hoppringill of Tynnes, and 

II 



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i^ HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

pasturing the lands thereof. When the time of the trial arrived, 
they failed to appear, and their lands were granted to the said 
James Hoppringill. 

1564 In 1564, among those charged to attend Sir Walter Kerr of 

Cessford, warden of the middle marches, was "the guidman of 
Galloscheles,*' and again in 1572, he, along with others, amongst 
whom were George Hoppringill of Blyndley, William Ker of 
Yair, and William Hoppringill of Torwodley, came under an 
obligation to rise against the King s enemies, and especially 
against the laird of Fairnyhirst and his accomplices, or the 
thieves within Liddisdaill, Ewesdaill, or Annandaill. 

Under the social conditions that prevailed at this period, 
the prosecution of trade or commerce would prove impossible, 
from the continuous proclamations which were issued, calling 
out the inhabitants to perform military service for shorter or 
longer periods as occasion required. The following is a 
specimen of a royal proclamation, — 

'* Thair be oppin proclamatioun in our Soverane Lordis name and 
authoritie, command and charge all betwix thre scoir and sextene yeris, that 
they and ilk ane of thame, * weil bodin in feir of weare'/ with xx. days* 
victuallis meit my Lord Regentis Grace at the burgh of Peblis, and fra that to 
pas furthwart as they salbe commandit for persute and invasioun of the said 
theivis and disorderit people, and reduceing of thame to oure Soverane Lordis 
obedience, under the pane of tinsell of lyfF, landis, and gudes." 

Much has been said and written in connection with the wild 
and lawless mosstroopers residing on both sides of the Border, 
and the following narrative vividly depicts the insecure tenure of 
life and property, before law and order became established. The 
offence was committed in 1568, but it was thirty-eight years after- 
wards ere the chief perpetrator was brought to justice, 

"Jonne Ellote of Cappschaw, dilanit, accuset and persewit be George 
Hoppringill of Torwoidlie, James and Dauid Hoppringlis as oyes (grand- 
children) with the remanent kyn and friendis of vmqle George Hoppringill of 
Torwoidlie, their guidscher (grandfather) of the crymes following, viz. : — 

" Forsamekill as the said Johnne Ellote of Cappschaw, Robert Elliot callet 
Mcartenis Hoby and Jok Airmestrang callit the Lardisjoky with their complices, 
with convocatioun of the hail clannis of the Airmestrangis, EUotes, Batiesons, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 13 

Grahames and remenant clannis, duelland alsweill on the Ing^lis as Scottis 
bordouris, all cowmone theives, outlaws, and broken men, to the number of 
thre hundreth personis or thairby; * bodin in feir of weir' (in military array), 
with jakis, speiris, steil-bonnetis, lance-stalflis, hagbutis, and pistolets, 
expreslie prohibeit to be borne, worne, vset, or schot with, be dyuerse our Actis 
of Parlament and Secreit Counsall, in the moneth of December, the yeir of God 
im vc threscoir aucht yeiris, come ford ward in hosteill maner, baith on horse 
and fute, to the place of Torwoidlie, and there vnder silence and clud of nycht, 
with fotr-hammeris and geistis (beams) dang up the zeittis (gates) of the said 
place, and be force and violence enterit within the samyn : and tuk the said 
George (Hoppringill) furth of his bed, and conveyit him away as captiue and 
prissoner with them to the Skaldeneise, within the Sherifdome of Selkirk; and 
thair maist crewallie and vnmerciefullie murdreist and slew the said George; 
committing thairthrow nocht only crewall and abhominabill murthour and 
sluchter, bot also vsurpatioun of our Soverane Lordis authoritie vpone thame, 
in taking of the said George Hoppringll captiue but (without) power or 
commissioun, he being our Sovrane Lordis frie lege. And siclyke, at the 
samen tyme, the said Johnne Ellotte and remenant personis, with thair 
complices, to the number above written, at the tyme foirsaid, brak up the haill 
kistis, cofferis, and lockfast houssis within the said place, and thiftiouslie 
staw, conceillit, resset, and away-tuik with thame, furth of the said place of 
Torwoidlie, and stabillis thairof, sevintene horsis pertening to the said 
George, price of the piece ourheid ane hundreth pundis money, togidder with 
the sowme of ane thouseand pundis of gold and money furth of the said George 
Hoppringiirs purse. 

Item. — Thre siluer peices, weyand fourscoir vnces of siluer or thairby, 
price of the vnce fourtie, schillings. 

Item, — ^Tua dissane of siluer spvnes, ilk spvne weyand twa vnce of 
siluer, price of the vnce fourtie schillings. 
Togidder with the haill bedding, naiprie, clething, abuilzementis insicht and 
plenissing being within the said place, worth the sowme of fyve thousand 
merkis money of this realme, had and transpoirtit away with thame and 
desponit thairvpoun att thair pleasour. 

The justice adudget the said Johnne to be denunceit our Souerane Lordis 
rebell, and put to the home ; and all his movabill guidis to be escheit and 
inbrocht to our Souerane Lordis vse, as fugitiue fra his hienis lawis, for the 
saidis crymes." 

1570 In consequence of a deadly quarrel existing between the 

Hoppringills and Elliots, great trouble had already taken place, 
and greater appeared to be in store if some remedy was not pro- 
vided. Regarding this feud, it is recorded that on December 
7th, 1570, 



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14 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

" There was ane day of law between the Hoppringles and the Elliots in 
Edinburgh, wherein the ane party set upon the other, and had not the town 
redd them, there had been great slaughter done that day." 

As was customary at that time, the Regent put them under 
a bond for their good behaviour for time coming. Among the 
Hoppringills were Daud Hoppringill of Gallowscheillis, James 
Hoppringill of Torsonce, William Hoppringill of Torwodlie, 
George Hoppringill of Blyndley, and Johnne Hoppringill of 
Buckholme. 

1575 In 1575 the feud appears to have still existed, as at that 

date certain persons were named to be '* commoners upon the 
said feud," who were to agree upon the terms of settlement. On 
the one side were Daud Hoppringill of Gallowscheillis, and eleven 
others of that name, while on the other side were six Elliots, 
three Douglases, two Rutherfords, and John TurnbuU of Minto. 
It is evident that the Hoppringills were men of light and 

1583 leading at that period, as in 1583 James Hoppringill of 
Quhytebank, and Andro Hoppringill of Gallowscheillis, are 
charged to appear before the Privy Council under pain of 
rebellion, 

** To gif thair gude advise anent the quieting of the present troubles and 
disorderis in Teviotdaill and Liddesdaill, and observing of gude ordour 
in tyme cuming." 

In The History and Poetry of the Scottish Border, by 
Professor Veitch, it is stated that the hero of the oldest known 
and probably the original version of **The Dowie Dens of 
Yarrow'' was a **servan' lad in Gala/' This humble individual 
had found favour in the sight of Mary Scott, "the rose of 
Yarrow," daughter of John Scott of Dryhope. Taking all the 
circumstances into account, it is considered probable that the 
ballad refers to an incident in her life previous to her marriage 
to Wat of Harden in 1576, by which event she became the 
ancestress of the Scotts of Gala. However willing the maiden 
might have been to overlook the difference in position between 
the daughter of a celebrated Border freebooter and her lover of 



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I 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 15 

low degree, her relatives had other views regarding the disposal 
of her hand. Hopeless of changing the mind of the young lady, 
her father proposed that the **servan' lad" should fight the nine 
lords, or lairds, who were suitors for her hand, considering it 
extremely improbable that he would survive the unequal combat. 
Nothing daunted, he accepted the condition. The fight took 
place, and when seven of his opponents had bit the dust, he was 
treacherously stabbed by the brother of his lady love, who was 
an interested spectator of the deadly struggle. 

The undernoted version of this celebrated ballad was dis- 
covered by Professor Veitch, which, in its beautiful simplicity, 
explains the incongruities which exist among the various versions 
of the **Dowie Dens'' collated by Ramsay, Motherwell, and Sir 
Walter Scott, — 

THE DOWIE DENS OF YARROW. I 

I 

At Dryhope lived a lady fair, 

The fairest flower in Yarrow ; 
And she refused nine noble men 

For a servan' lad in Gala. 

Her father said that he should flght 

The nine lords all to-morrow; 
And he that should the victor be, 

Would get the Rose of Yarrow. 

Quoth he, * You're nine and I'm but ane, 
And in that there's no' much marrow; 

Yet I shall fecht ye man for man. 
In the dowie dens o' Yarrow.' 

She's kissed his lips and combed his hair, 

As oft she'd done before, O, 
An' set him on her milk-white steed. 

Which bore him on to Yarrow. 

When he got o'er yon high, high hill, 

An' dbwn the dens o' Yarrow, 
There did he see the nine lords all, 

But there was not one his marrow. 



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i6 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

* Now here ye're nine, an* Fm but ane, 

But yet I am not sorrow ; 
For here TU fecht ye man for man, 
For my true love on Yarrow.' 

Then he wheeFd round and fought so fierce, 
Till the seventh fell on Yarrow ; 

When her brother sprang from a bush behind, 
And ran his body thorough. 

He never spoke more words than these, 
An' they were words o' sorrow : 

* Ye may tell my true love, if ye please, 

That I'm sleepin' sound in Yarrow.' 

They've ta'en the young man by the heels. 
And trailed him like a harrow. 

And then they flung the comely youth 
In a whirlpool o' Yarrow. 

The lady said, * I dreamed yestreen — 
I fear it bodes some sorrow — 

That I was pu'in' the heather green 
On the scroggy braes o' Yarrow.' 

Her brother said, * I'll read your dream. 
But it should cause nae sorrow, 

Ye may go seek your lover hame, 
For he's sleepin' sound in Yarrow.' 

Then she rode o'er yon gloomy height. 
An' her heart was fu' o' sorrow ; 

But only saw the clud o' night, 
Or heard the roar o' Yarrow. 

But she wandered east, so did she wast. 
And searched the forest thorough, 

Until she spied her ain true love 
Lyin' deeply drowned in Yarrow. 

His hair it was five quarters lang, 

Its colour was the yellow ; 
She twined it round her lily hand, 

And drew him out o' Yarrow, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 17 

She kissed his lips, and combed his head, 

As oft she'd done before, O; 
She laid him o'er her milk-white steed, 

An* bore him home from Yarrow. 

She washed his wounds in yon well-strand, 

And dried him wi' the hollan'. 
And aye she sighed, and said, *Alas! 

For my love I had him chosen.' 

' Go hold your tongue, ' her father said, 

* There's little cause for sorrow, 
I'll wed ye on a better lad 
Than ye hae lost in Yarrow. ' 

* Haud your ain tongue, my faither dear, 

I canna' help my sorrow; 
A fairer flower ne'er sprang in May 
Than I hae lost in Yarrow. 

I meant to make my bed fu' wide. 

But you may make it narrow. 
For now I've nane to be my guide. 

But a deid man drowned in Yarrow.' 

An aye she screighed and cried, * Alas! ' 

Till her heart did break wi' sorrow, 
An' sank into her faither's arms, 

'Mang the dowie dens o' Yarrow, 

Professor Veitch thus comments, — **The falling into the 
father's arms, which fitly concludes the ballad, did not mean the 
conclusion of her career. The terminations of ballads of this 
class are usually in the same conventional style. And probably 
^ the Flower of Yarrow' was no exception to the run of her 
sex in having more than one love experience." 



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CHAPTER III. 

SHORTLY before the Reformation an Act was passed by 
the Scottish Parliament attaching the penalty of death to 
those found guilty of practising sorcery or witchcraft. 
For over, one hundred years this law remained in operation, 
bringing misery and death to numbers of innocent persons. The 
sufferings these miserable wretches had to endure before death 
released them can scarcely be conceived. If they maintained 
their innocence, they were tortured for the purpose of extorting 
a confession; life was made unendurable, till the victims were 
ready to admit anything so as to obtain a brief respite from 
their agony. The legal records at this date are full of instances 
of the horrible atrocities perpetrated in the name of justice and 
religion. 

So far as Galashiels is concerned, there exists no record of 
any case of the kind. The Witchie Knowe, or, as it is now 
termed, Craigpark, the residence of Provost Dun, is credited 
with being the locality where the last penalty of the law was in- 
flicted in the district in connection with the crime of witchcraft, 
but no evidence is forthcoming to support the allegation. 
1590 In 1590 a celebrated trial occurred, in which the wife of Sir 

James Pringle of Galashiels was concerned. This was the case 
of Agnes Sampsoune, in Nether Keyth, alias *'the wyse wyff of 
Keyth." She was charged upon fifty-three different counts, — 
conspiring the King's death, witchcraft, sorcery, and incan- 
tation, the thirty-ninth being, — 

** Sche haifing done pleasour to the gudwyffe of Gallowschelis, for the 
quhilk sche did nocht satisfie hir sa sone als the said Agnes desyrit, and thair- 
fore sche said to the said g-udwyffe that *Sche sould repent it.* And 
within a few houris thairafter the said gudwyffe tuik ane wodness (madness), 
and her toung schot out of hir heid, and swallit like ane pott, quairfore sche 
sent to her the thing sche desyrit, and prayit her to come to her, and sche baid 
the seru^nd, * Ga away hame, for the gudwyffe was weill. ' Being found 

18 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 19 

guilty, the said Agnes was orderit be the justice, pronounceit be the mouth of 
James Scheill, dempster, to be tane to the castle (hill) of Edinburgh, and thair 
bund to ane stake and werreit quhill sche was dead, and thairefter her body 
to be brunt in assis, and all her movable gudis to be escheit and in brocht to 
our Sowrane Lordis vse, &c., &c." 

The belief in witchcraft was long in dying out. So recently 
as 1766 the Seceders, in their annual confession of sins, bewailed 
that the penal statutes against witches had been repealed, •^con- 
trary to the express law of God.'* 

At the present day it is sometimes found necessary to bind 
over some quarrelsome individuals to keep the peace. In the 
olden time this method of preserving law and order was an 
ev'efryday occurrence; the following are a few examples, taken 
from a large number of instances connected with the locality,— 

159^ **In 1591 Andro Logane of Coitfield became caution to the extent of 

;^2,ooo for George Hoppringill of Torwodlie, and those for whom he is 
answerable by the general band that they * sal! observe and keep the kingis 
Majesteis pease.' Caution was offered for a similar amount by James 
Hoppringill of that ilk, and James Hoppringill of Quhytebank for Johnne 
Hoppringill of Buckum. Andro Ker of Yair likewise became security in looo 
merks for George Hoppringill of Blindley, that he and all for whom he is 
answerable * shall keep the Kingis pease.*" 

Domestic dissension also appears to have occasionally 
^597 arisen, as, in 1597, it was found necessary for 

** William Cairncroce of Colmisly to become surety to the extent of ;^iooo 
for Mary Borthwick, life renter of the lands of Gallowscheillis, and Johnne 
Home, now her spouse, not to harm James Pringill of Smailholm (her son); and 
James Hoppringill of that ilk became surety for James Pringill of Smailholm 
in ;;^iooo not to harm the said Mary Borthwick and her spouse." 

In these modern days, when men dwell in peace and safety, 
it is somewhat difficult to realize the frequent outrages that were 
perpetrated, in many cases upon innocent and unoffending 
people. Appletreeleaves was the scene of one of these lawless 
attacks, as in 1598 complaint was made to the Privy Council by 
Philip Darling, Apiltreleves, that. 



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20 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

''While he was gangand at his awin pleuch in peceabill and quiet maner 
without armour, Thomas Hardie, in Blyndley, furnished with pistolets, set 
upoun him and cruellie persewit him of his lyfFe, shot three pistolets at him, 
and had not failed to slay him, were not the grace of God and his awin better 
defence." 

Hardie, who was a servant to George Hoppringill of Blynd- 
ley, failed to appear, and was proclaimed rebel. 

In ancient times the Darlings of Appletreeleaves were an 
influential family in the district. In an extract from a general 
decreet of valuation of teinds, of date 9th December, 1629, it is 
recorded that 

'•There compeared Peter Darling and Andro Darling, callit Metkle Andro^ 
and Andro Darling, callit Young AndrOy equal proprietoris and portionioris of 
ye landis of Apiltreleves. '* 

In this document it is declared that the lands of Langhaugh 
were a part and pendicle of Appletreeleaves, and from that date 
down to comparatively recent times it remained in the hands of 
the Darling family. In 1 792 that portion of the estate now known 
as Ladhope came into the possession of the great-great-grand- 
daughter of Andrew Darling, she being the nearest lawful heir. 
In the same year she disposed of Ladhope to Archibald Menzies, 
merchant in Edinburgh, who, in 1801, sold it to John McRitchie, 
writer, there, and in 181 3 it was acquired by Archibald Gibson, 
W.S., Edinburgh. In the same year the Court of Session divided 
the estate, when George Blaikie, portioner in Appletreeleaves, 
who appears to have been related to the Darlings, acquired the 
lands of Langhaugh. In 181 7 they were sold to William 
Clark, R.N., who is now succeeded by his son. Major Clark. 
In 1822 the remaining portion of the lands of Appletreeleaves 
passed into the hands of Mr Gibson, and, in 1843, they 
were acquired by William Brunton, in whose family they 
still remain. That part of the estate known as Darling's 
Haugh, extending to the south side of the Gala, comprised a 
small portion of the north side of Island Street, Bridge Place, 
Bridge Street, the north side of High Street, Sime Place, and 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 21 

the north side of Channel Street, and now forms part of the Gala 
estate, having been acquired at various dates since 1775. The 
remainder of the haugh on the north side of the water came into 
possession of Messrs Home Sc Rose, W.S., Edinburgh, about 
1834, being utilised to a certain extent for the erection of Stirling 
Street, — then called the Tory Haugh, in reference to the politi- 
cal party in whose interest the buildings were erected. The 
superiority of the land is now vested in the trustees of Lad hope 
Parish Church. 

The ruins of the old tower of Appletreeleaves still remain, 
but now only serve to form the walls of a stable or byre in con- 
nection with the adjacent cottage. Externally, the building 
measures thirty-one feet in length by nineteen feet in width, 
while the clay-built walls are three and a half feet in thickness. 
Owing to its elevated situation, it commands an extensive view 
of the surrounding district. Northward, the scene is bounded 
by Buckholm Hill; while, to the west, Meigle rears its head high 
above the neighbouring heights. On their sloping sides the 
ploughboy's whistle is now heard, and the yellow grain waves 
where once the purple heather was reflected in the limpid stream 
which meandered down the narrow valley. Southward, appear 
the ancestral oaks of the Scotts of Gala, the favourite haunt 
of the White Lady of Avenel, and where, it is said, the 
ancient Druids were wont to celebrate their unhallowed rites; 
while Gorgum, the wood-crowned summit of Gala Hill, 
keeps watch over the old village nestling below. Turning east- 
ward, the eye wanders from the wooded heights of Abbotsford to 
the triple Eildons, the Trimontium of the old Roman invader, 
celebrated in Border legend and song; and, nearer. Darling's Hill 
completes the circle. The scene is still fair and peaceful, but the 
stilly solitude of the once pastoral valley has departed. Along- 
side the Gala stretches one of the great iron highways, over 
which, neither day nor night, does the traffic cease. In place of 
the yellow broom which once waved in wild luxuriance, buildings 
now cover the haughs. On the hill-side, streets diverge in 
every direction; and on the listening ear faintly falls the busy 



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22 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

hum of men, who have founded their habitations where once the 
timid moorfowl cowered amid the purple bloom. 

Shortly after the attack upon Philip Darling, Hardie and a 
fellow-servant named Robert Quhippo, along with their master, 
George Hoppringill, made a raid upon the farm of Mitchelston, 
near Stow, belonging to William Pringle, litster, Edinburgh, with 
intent to murder the inmates, who, fortunately, were absent at the 
time. For this outrage, George Hoppringill became surety for 
;^200 on behalf of Hardie and Quhippo, that they would appear 
before the King and answer to a complaint against them by 
William Pringle; but, on account of their non-appearance, they 
were put to the horn (outlawed), and George Hoppringill forfeited 
his surety money. What was the ultimate fate of Hardie 
is not recorded, but in the following year Quhippo was brought 
to trial and indicted for 

**(i) Being art and part in the thifteous steilling of ane black meir and 
ane brown horse pertaining to Baldie Watt in Adinston. 

(2) For taking away ten oxin and fyve ky furth of the lands of Soutray- 

barnes pertaining to Robert Wodell in Tranent. 

(3) Forsamekili as James Hoppringill, sone to William Hoppringill 

(of Mitchelston), haifing deluerit to the said Robert Quhippo the 
sowme of jQi^ to be convoyit to George Hoppringill of Blindlie 
for woU coft be the said James fra the said George. And in the 
meantyme he consultit with James Hardie, his compainzeoun, 
ane notorious theif, how he sould detene the said sowme: and 
agreit that the said James sould sett vpone him at Wompla-bush, 
in his passing to Blindlie with the said siluer, lykeas, he meitand 
with him thair, causit the said James cut his claythis, as gif ane 
number of theifis had set vpone him, and had tane the said 
siluer, with his naig from him ; with the quhilk siluer he never 
partit, bot, be consent, staw the said siluer, and was airt and 
pairt with the said James Hardie in steilling thairof.'' 

For the defence, Quhippo objected to the judge on the 
ground that his wife was related to the ^^guidman of Gallow- 
scheilis/' who had taken an active part in the prosecution. This, 
as well as several other objections, was overruled, and the case 
went to trial. Upon the charge of stealing the money he was 
acquitted, but, being found guilty of stealing the cattle, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. aj 

"The sadis justice deputes by the mouth of William Blak, dempster, 
ordainit the said Robert to be tane to the gibbet besyde the mercait cross of 
Edinburgh, and thairvpoune to be hangit quhill he was deid." 

Possibly with the view of minimising, as much as possible, 
the effects of the frequent quarrels that were continually arising, 
proclamations of a precautionary nature were made at various 
times. 

^'That nane of quhat calling soevir within the cuntreyis laitlie called the 
Borderis of ather of the Kingdomes, sail weare, carry, or bear any pistolletis, 
hacquebuttis, or gunes of any sort bot in his Majesteis service apoun pane of 
imprisonment during his Majesteis pleasour, and further punischment accord- 
ing to the lawis of ather Kingdom." 

Notwithstanding the manner in which the Hoppringills 
banded together in support of each other against all comers, they 
evidently reserved the luxury of fighting amongst themselves, as 
James Hoppringill of Gallowscheilis and George Hoppringill of 
Blyndley were summoned by the Privy Council to appear and 
answer touching 

** Their bearing and shooting of pistolets at divers times, contrary to the 
laws, e,g,^ discharging hagbuts and pistolets at one another beside the house 
of BIyndlev in September last. Both appeared, and James declared * that he 
had bornt and worne hacquebutis in the persute of his Majesteis rebellis 
allanerlie (only) quha socht his lyfFe,' while George pled that he had only done 
the same, * for resisting the stouthis and reiffis of thevis and revaris.' " 

This statement, however, did not save them from punish- 
ment, as the King and Council ordained James to enter in ward 
in the castle of Edinburgh, and George within the castle of 
Blackness, within twenty-four hours. An effort was subsequently 
made to smooth matters between these two neighbours, and a 
charge was given them both to appear before the Privy Council, 
prepared to submit the feud between them to ** ane amicable and 
freindly arbitriment of freindis,*' to be nominated by that body. 

ICQQ In 1599, during the reign of James VI., Galashiels 

was erected into a burgh of barony, with the right, amongst other 



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^4 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 

privileges, of holding a weekly market on Wednesdays, and a 
yearly fair on Midsummer Day. This concession was ratified in 
1617, with an additional grant to hold a second fair on the 29th 
September. Again, on the resignation of Sir James Pringle, 
who disponed the lands of Galashiels to his grandson, James 
Scott, son of Hugh Scott of Deuchar, and his wife Jean Pringle, 
a charter ot NovodamuSy dated 9th June, 1632, was granted by 
Charles I. to James Scott, which was ratified the ensuing year 

by an Act of the Scottish Parliament, in the following terms, — 

I 

I '^ Owre Soverane Lord and estates of this Parlimerit ordains ane Ratifica- 

j tion to be maid thairine ratifiand, approvand and for his Hienes and his 

I successors perpetuallie confirmand lykas be the tennor heirof our said 

Soverane Lord and estates of Parliment ratifies, approves, and for his Hienes 
and his successors perpetuallie confirms the Chartor maid, given, and granted 
be our said Soverane Lord with advise and consent of his principal! thesaurer, 
deputhe thesaurer, and remenant Lordis of his Hienes exchecker of Scotland, 
his Hienes commissioners to, and in favour of, his Hienes lovitt, James Scott, 
eldest lawfuU sone to Hugh Scott of Dewchar, procreat betwix him and Jean 
Pringle, his spous, dochter to Sir James Pringle of Gallowsheills, knicht — his 
airs male assignais quhatsumever heritabiie of all and haill the lands and 
baronie of Gallowsheills, comprehending the particular townes, lands, burgh 
of baronie, advocutioun, donatioun, richt of patronage, and uthers under- 
written, viz.: — All and haill the lands and steadings of Gallowsheills and 
Mosilie, with the pendicles thereof, callit nether or eister maynes of Boylesyd, 
Stobrig, with the tower, fortalice, mansioun, maner place, houss, biggings, 
wodes, cornemylnes and walkmylnes thairof, and with the fishings of salmond 
and uthers fishings upon the water of Tweed on baith the sydes thairof, betwix 
the bridge of Melros and Lands of Southerlandhall, quhair the water of Atrick 
rines in the said river of Tweed; with all and sundrie the annexis, connexis, 
tennents, tennandries, service of frie tennents, pairts, pendicles, and pertinents 
thairof quhatsomever, with the burgh of baronie of Gallowsheills, and with all 
and sundrie mercatts, fairs, liberties, priviledges, jwmunites, proffeits, co- 
modities, easments and richteous pertinents perteining and belonging thairto, 
togider with the advocatione, donation, and richt of patronage of the viccarage 
of the Kirk of Lyndane with all priuledges, benifits, libirties, and comodities 
thairof lyand within the lordship of Atrick Forrest and Sherefdome of Selkirk, 
upon the resignation of the said Sir James Pringle, knicht, maid be him with 
consent of John and George Pringles, his sones, and of the said Hew Scott 
and Jean Pringle, his spous, and als the new gift and dispositioun contenit in 
the said charter maid be his Majestie to James Scott, his airs male and assignais 
foresaid, heretable of all and haill the said lands and baronie of Gallowsheills^ 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 25 

comprehending the particular tounes, &c., with the unioun annexation and 
incorporation of the samyne in an haill and frie baronie, to be callit now 
and in all tyme coming as of befor the baronie of Gallowsheills, quhairof the 
tower, fortalice, and maner place of Gallowsheills is ordanit to be principall 
messuage and thair ane sasing to be takine in all tyme coming to stand and 
be sufficient for the haill in maner specifiet in the said chartor, as the samyne 
beirand the said lands and others foresaid. To be haldiiie oi our Soverane 
Lord and Hienes successors in frie heritage, frie baronie and burgh of baronie, 
for ever in maner specifiet in the said chartor quhilk is under his Majesties 
great seale of the dait at Halyrudhous the nynt day of June, the yeir of God, 
Im Vie threttie twa yeirs — at mair length beirs, &c. — with provision always 
that the present ratificatioun granted in favour of the said James Scott of 
Gallowsheills, nor na 'pairt of the same sould be hurtfuU or pfejudiciall to 
Robert, Earle of Roxburgh, nor to the ShirefF of Forrest, thair airs nor 
successors in thair richt and title of the teinds personage and viccarage of the 
Kirk of Lyndane as titulars of the same or utherways howsomever, but that 
the same sould remaine to thame as befor unhurt or prejudget hereby." 

The Crown rent for the barony of Gala, comprising Mossilee 
is jCgOy IDS Scots, or jCTj ios lod sterling; while that for Blyndley 
is ;^5o, 3s 4d Scots, or jC^j 3s 7|d sterling. 

On the 22nd April, 1692, Hugh Scott obtained a Crown 
charter for the barony termed, Burgum de Gala^ in favour of 
himself and his son James, the Reddendo of this charter being 
"knight service," viz,: — "Finding and supporting two horsemen, 
one with a lance and other sufficient arms, etc, and also keeping 
up the manor place built of stone and lime.'* 

In the old churchyard still stands an aisle erected by Hugh 
Scott of Deuchar, On a sculptured stone above the doorway is 
the date 1636, together with the arms and letters H, S. I. P, 
for Hugh Scott and Jean Pringle. With the exception of the 
original portion of old Gala House — should a vestige remain, — 
this is the oldest building in Galashiels. Originally, the interior 
of the aisle had been about fifteen feet square, but after the old 
church was removed, to which it was attached, an addition of 
about six feet was made to the length of the side walls, and a 
gable erected, in which is inserted a Gothic window having a 
muUion in the centre. Above the window, built into the wall, 
is a sculptured stone that originally occupied a position above 



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56 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

the door of the old church, which was erected in 1617. It is 
now considerably wasted and weather-worn, but the following 
inscription can still be deciphered, — 

GLORIE . TO . GOD . IN . FEVIN 
PEACE . IN . EARTH . &> 
GVDVIL . AMONG . MEN. 

In all probability the Tolbooth had been erected shortly 
after the burgh of barony was created in 1599, as some accommo- 
dation of that nature was required. Previous to the building 
of the church in 161 7, it was used as a place of worship. It was 
a building of two storeys, with a thatched roof, having attached 
to it a square tower, which contained a clock and bell; the clock 
is now in the tower of the Parish Church, but the bell 
has disappeared. At the door were suspended the jougs, 
used for the punishment of evil doers, which were an inseparable 
adjunct to jails and churches in the olden time; those in 
question were carried off to Abbotsford by Sir Walter Scott, 
where they are still preserved. It occupied a site on the east 
side of Gala Terrace, at its junction with Scott Crescent — about 
one hundred feet north from the Cross, In its day the Tolbooth 
served for a variety of purposes, at one time being used as a 
church, and at another as a dancing school. It was demolished 
about 1880. Previous to this date the ground upon which it 
was erected had been feued on the condition that the venerable 
building was not to be interfered with. A violent gale, however, 
damaged it considerably, and latterly it fell into such a ruinous 
condition as rendered it a source of danger to those in its 
neighbourhood, and it was reluctantly removed. 



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CHAPTER IV. 

AMONG the reports of the Historical Manuscript Com- 
mission, recently published, there is one belonging to the 
Earl of Lonsdale, in which occurs a narrative of a jour- 
1629 ney into Scotland in 1629, from which is extracted the following 
reference to the district, — 

** From [Boldside] to Gallowshields, two miles, to which place is excellent 



I 
good ground, and to Sir James Pringle to his house did we go, and there were I 

wondrous courteously entertained. He is one of the best husbands in the 

country as appeareth by his planting and suffering his tenants to hold on him I 

by planting 6 fruit trees or 12 other trees, and if they fail, to pay for every 

tree not planted 4d, he also finding two fullers mills and two corn mills. The 

town is a burgh barony, he himself is the Sheriff of Ettrick, and has been these 

three years togither; he is also a Commissioner in the same Sheriffdom, of 

which there be divers in all the Sheriffdoms of Scotland, they being of the 

nature of our Justices of Assize in their circuits, above Justices of Peace, he is 

also a convener of justice, a Justice of Peace, he is a great man in his country. 

There are of the Pringles for some eight miles up Gallow water gentlemen 
all of pretty seats and buildings. On the Sunday as soon as we came to 
the town we alighted and went to the church to him. He took us into his 
own seat, the one on the one side of him, the other at the other side ; we 
heard a good sermon the fore and afternoon; there were the finest seats I 
have anywhere seen, and the orderliest church. Beside him is the Meageld 
Hill, which word Meageld was a watch word to gather those of a company 
when they were dispersed in war. He hath a very pretty park with many 
natural walks in it, artificial ponds and arbours now a making; he hath neat 
gardens and orchards, and all his tenants through his care, he hath abundance 
of cherry trees bearing a black cherry, some of which I see to be about thirty 
yards high and a fathom thick, great store of sycamores, trees he calleth silk 
trees and fir trees. He gave very great respect and said he heard of my 
father's fame. I see there the finest gun I ever beheld which was the King of 
Spain's. 

In Scotland the wives alter not their surnames. They served up the 
dinner and supper with their hats on before their master, each dish covered 
with anoth^, then was there a bason withheld for to wash our hands before 
we sat down, then being seated Sir James said grace. Their cheer was big 
pottage, long kale, bowe or white kale, which is cabbage, 'breoh sopps, 

27 



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28 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

powdered beef, roast and boiled mutton, a venison pie in the form of an egg, 
goose, then cheese in a great company of little bits in a pewter platter and 
cheese also uncut, then apples, then the table cloth taken off and a towel the 
whole breadth of the table and half the length of it, a bason and ewer to wash, 
then a green carpet laid on, then one cup of beer set on the carpet, then a little 
long lawn servitor, plaited up a shilling or a little more broad laid cross over 
the corner of the table, then be there three boys to say grace, the first the 
thanksgiving, the second the paternoster, the third a prayer for a blessing 
to God's church, the goodman of the house, his parents, kinsfolk, and the whole 
company, then they do drink hot waters, so at supper when to bed, the 
collation which [is] a doupe of ale; and also in the morn and at other times 
when a man desireth to drink one gives them first beer, holding him the 
narrow servitor to dry his mouth with, and a wheat loaf and a knife, and when 
one has drunk he cutteth him a little bread in observance of the old rule, 
* Incipe cum liquido siccofinire memento. 

When we came away in the morn. Sir James set us two miles and his second, 
his eldest son better than four, and writ us letters to Edinburgh. The Pringles 
glory in that they were never but on the King's part in all the troublesome 
times, and they therefore of the states were envied for they never * lowped ' 
out with any of the Lords nor were attainted. At Sir James' house they have 
a thing called a palm, in nature of our ferula, but thicker for blasphemers. 
England and Scotland wooed roughly before they wedded. Sir John Scott, 
one of the secret council, is his son's wife's father. 

Gallow water runneth into Tweed, and a little beneath its meeting with 
Tweed there hath been a very strong fortified bridge, having the tower yet 
standing, which was the gate to the bridge in the old time. From Gallow- 
shields to Windeleys (Blyndley) one of the Pringles, is two miles. It stands 
in a dale, up which dale is a pretty wood on our left hand; within the sight of 
the same side another of the Pringles, his house is called Torretleys. On the 
other side of the water on the right hand is another of them, his house is called 
Buckholme, and by the water side he hath a wood called Buckholme. From 
thence to Herret's houses, a guest house where we alighted, is eight miles, 
in which space we crossed the Gallow water some twenty times." 

Such is the quaint, rambling, and, at times, somewhat 
obscure description of the hospitality and surroundings of the 
house of Gala in the days before Sir James Pringle retired to 
Smailholm. 

The fortified bridge referred to in the narrative crossed 
Tweed at Bridge-end, and is said to have been built, or more 
probably repaired, by Robert^ tlie second Pringle in Galashiels. 

* Begfin with a liquid, but Vemember to end with something dry (solid). 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 29 

He had also a charter for the lands of Smailholm, in Roxburgh- 
shire, and Pilmuir, in Lauderdale. Sir Walter Scott records in 
a note to the Monastery that he heard an eye-witness state that 
he saw a stone taken from the river bearing the following 
inscription, — 

** I, Sir John Pringle of Palmer stede, 
Give an hundred markis of gowd sae reid, 
To help to bigg my brigg ower Tweed." 

This was the draw-bridge Sir Walter used with such effect 
in the tales of the A bbot and Monastery^ both of which are con- 
nected with the district. It has been thus described in Gordon's 
Itinerarium Septentrionale, — 

'' About a mile and a half from Melrose, I saw the remains of a curious 
bridge over the river Tweed, consisting of three octangular pillars, or rather 
towers, standing within the water without any arches to join them. The 
middle one, which is most entire, has a door toward the north, and I suppose 
another opposite one toward the south, which I could not see without crossing 
the water. In the middle of this tower is a projection or cornice surrounding 
it, the whole is hollow from the door upward, and now open at the top near 
which is a small window. I was informed that not long ago, a countryman 
and his family lived in this tower, and got his livelihood by laying out planks 
from pillar to pillar, and conveying passengers over the river." 

The Rev. Adam Milne, who was minister of Melrose (171 1- 
1747), has left on record that in his time three pillars were still 
standing, and on the centre one was the arms of the Pringles of 
Galashiels. 

At what time this bridge fell into decay is unknown, but it 
would appear as if it had been the only bridge over Tweed in the 
district till about 1750, when a stone bridge was erected in the 
neighbourhood of Darnick, at a place called the ** Boat Sheil/' 
This structure, however, only lasted some seven or eight years, 
when it fell, and shortly afterwards the present bridge was built. 
Mr Adam Milne thus refers to the locality previous to the 
erection of the bridge, — 



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30 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

*'To the west from Gattonside about half a mile there is a good ferry-boat 
on Tweed called the Westhouses boat house. This boat, having a good pool, 
and being the ordinary passage from the south to Edinburgh, is much 
frequented. They have likewise a good fishing for salmon. Above the boat 
is Westhouses, the old possession of the Ormistons for many years. They 
have a good house here with many vaults, and gun holes on every side after 
the old form. I have seen their names on the principal gate, Anno 1581. 
They had the custom of the bridge while it was standing. This place was in 
the possession of the Pringles of Blindlee for some time, and now belongs to 
Mr Scott of Galashiels." 

The bridge is also referred to by Tennant, who made a tour 
through Scotland in 1772, — 

'* At a place called Bridge-end stood till within these few years a large pier, 
the remaining one of four which formed a bridge here over Tweed. In it was 
a gateway large enough for a carriage to pass through, and over that a room 
twenty-seven feet by fifteen, the residence of the person who took the tolls. 
This bridge was not formed with arches, but with great planks laid from pier 
to pier. It is said that it was built by David I. in order to afford a passage to 
his abbey of Melrose, which he had newly translated from its ancient site; and 
also to facilitate the journeys of the devout to the four great pilgrimages of 
Scotland, viz.. Scone, Dundee, Paisley, and Melrose." 

In Sir Walter Scott's time vestiges of this bridge were still 
in existence, as he states that he has often seen the foundations 
of the columns, when drifting down the Tweed for the purpose 
of leistering salmon by torchlight. 

Reference is also made in the narrative to the tower of Blynd- 
ley, which was still standing at the beginning of this century, in 
the form of a strong castellated mansion. It occupied a site on 
the hillside, a field's breadth to the south-east of The Birks, where 
several old ash trees still mark the locality. Falling into a ruin- 
ous condition, it was pulled down for the sake of the building 
material and conveyed to Galashiels, where it was utilised in the 
erection of houses in Tannage Street, or Channel Street, as it is 
now named. 

The estate of Blindlee is now merged in that of Gala, having 
been purchased by Hugh Scott in 1689. 



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CHAPTER V. 

THE original version of the song *^Galla Water*' is 
very old, but, with the exception of two verses, the 
words are lost. In Herd's, Johnson's, and other col- 
lections other two stanzas are interpolated, which rightly 
belong to a song entitled, '*The silken snooded lassie," 
and have no connection with the fragment of the song in 
question, which is as follows, — 

GALLA WATER (original version.) 

Braw, braw lads of Galla Water, 

O braw lads of Galla Water; 
ril kilt my coats aboon my knee, 

And follow my luve through the water. 

O'er yon bank and o'er yon brae, 

O'er yon moss amang the heather; 
I'll kilt my coats aboon my knee, 

And follow my luve through the water. 

In all probability these would be the words to which the 
beautiful air of ** Galla Water'* was written, but whether the 
author of either the words or the melody inhabited the cottage 
or the hall no record remains to tell. Dr Haydn, the celebrated 
German composer, admired the air, and wrote below the score of 
the melody in his best English, "This one Dr Haydn's favourite 
song. "" 

Another version of ''Gala Water*' is extant, which also must 
be of considerable antiquity. From the reference it contains to 
Pringle of Galashiels, it must have been in existence previous to 
1632 1632, when Sir James Pringle conveyed the estate to his grandson, 
James Scott. About a hundred years ago it was generally 
understood in the village that the black-eyed lass of Galashiels 
was Jean, daughter of Sir James Pringle, but were this the case, 

31 



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32 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

a great amount of poetic license has been taken with the 
facts regarding her. The song was extremely popular in the 
district, and was much more highly esteemed than the modern 
version by Robert Burns. The verses have no merit as poetry, 
and are only of interest on account of the allusions they contain 
to familiar places on Gala Water. 

GALA WATER (old version.) 

Out ower yon moss, out ower yon muir. 

Out ower yon bonnie bush o' heather, 
O' a' ye lads whae*er ye be, 

Shew me the way to Gala Water. 

Braw, braw lads o' Gala Water, 

Bonnie lads o' Gala Water: 
The Lothian lads can ne'er compare 

Wi' the braw lads o' Gala Water. 

At Nettleilat we will begin, 

And at Haltree we'll write a letter: 
We'll down by the Bower, and take a scour, 

And drink to the lads o' Gala Water. 

There's Blindlee and Torwoodlee, 

And Galashiels is muckle better; 
But young Torsonce he bears the gree 

O' a' the Pringles o' Gala Water. 

Buckham is a bonnie place, 

But Appletreeleaves is muckle better; 
But Cockleferry bears the gree 

Frae ilk laird on Gala Water. 

Lords and lairds cam' here to woo, 

And gentlemen wi' sword and dagger; 
But the black-eyed lass o' Galashiels 

Wad hae nane but the gree o' Gala Water 

Lothian lads are black wi' reek. 

And Teviotdale lads are little better; 
But she's kiltit her coats aboon her knee, 

And gane wi' the lad o' Gala Water. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 33 

Though corn rigs are guid to see, 

Yet flocks o' sheep are muckle better; 
For oats will shake in a windy day, 

When the lambs will play by Gala Water. 

Adieu, ** Sour Plums o' Galashiels/' 

Farewell, my father and my mother; 
For ril awa wi' the black herd lad, 

Wha keeps his flocks on Gala Water. 

Braw, braw lads o' Gala Water, 

Bonnie lads o' Gala Water, 
Let them a' say what they will. 

The gree gaes aye to Gala Water. 

The modern song **Gala Water'* was written by Robert 
Burns in 1793 for Thomson's collection. It is evident that he 
had been acquainted with the foregoing version, as well as the 
original, and it is interesting to note how the great poet has 
caught and condensed the pervading sentiment. 

The following is the modern version, the words *^ Braw, 
braw lads" being sung as a refrain at the conclusion of each 
verse, — 

GALA WATER (modern version.) 

Braw, braw lads on Yarrow braes. 

Ye wander thro' the blooming heather; 
But Yarrow braes, nor Ettrick shaws 
' Can match the lads o' Gala Water. 

But there is ane, a secret ane, 

Aboon them a' I lo'e him better; 
And rU be his, and he'll be mine, 

The bonnie lad o' Gala Water. 

Altho' his daddie was nae laird, 

And the' I hae na meikle tocher, 
Yet rich in kindest, truest love. 

We'll tent our flocks by Gala Water, 

It ne'er was wealth, it ne'er was wealth. 
That coft contentment, peace, or pleasure; 

The bands and bliss o' mutual love, 
O, that's the chiefest warld's treasure. 



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34 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS 

1655 In 1655 the lands and manor of Galashiels were in the 

possession of persons named Andro, probably for debt and 
subject to redemption. At that date, Patrick Andro of Barbour- 
land was served heir to his father, John Andro, in the barony, 
''With the lands of over and nether Hauches, and three waulkmills, the 
lands of Netherbarnes, the lands of Boilsyde, with the fishings and ferry boat 
on the Tweed, from Gala mouth to Ettrick, &c." 

It would appear, however, that the estate was redeemed 
shortly afterwards, judging from the following copy of a manu- 
script belonging to the Gala family, which has been fortunately 
preserved. It affords information regarding the rental of Gala- 
shiels at that date, together with the names of the tenants and 
the extent of their holdings. In this case the ^Uwelfe «)ume 
mailer'* occupied sufficient land to maintain two horses or cows, 
or twenty sheep, while the *^sax soume mailer'' could only keep 
stock to half that amount. 

THE RENTALE OF THE LANDS AND BARRONRIE 
j5-5 of GALLASCHEILES, 1656. 

The rents ar to be payed at two tearmes, viz.: — Whitsonday and 
Mertimes as followes: — 

12 SOUMB MAILERS. 

William Wilsone, elder, ... ... £ Scots 26 13 4 

Rot. Haldone, and a bole malt, ... ... ... 26 13 4 

Alexr Speiding, ... ... ... ... 26 13 4 

Johne Crouckes, ... ... ... ... 26 13 4 

Williame Maben, ... ... ... ... 26 13 4 

Andro Peca, ... ... ... ... 26 13 4 

Johne Wilsone, elder, ... ... ... ... 26 13 4 

Adame Patersone, ... ... ... ... 26 13 4 

Robert Mabon, ... ... ... ... 33 6 8 

William Frier, ... ... ... ... 32 o o 



6 SOUME MAILEKS. 



George Frier, millir, 
George Dobsone, 
William Clappertoune, 
Adam Haldone, 
Johne Purvis, 
Johne Mersell, 



Sumay 


?2L 


IL 


J 




15 


2 


8 




20 








• 


30 








. 


13 


6 


8 




13 


6 


8 


• 


•3 


6 


8 



Forward, £ Scots 105 2 8 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 35 

6 souMB MAILERS, conitnued — 

Brought forward, £ Scots 105 2 8 

Thomas Gill, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 

Johne Patersone, ... ... ... 13 6 8 

Jeane Dods, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 

John Haldone, elder, ... ... ... ... 1368 

Jennet Frater, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 

Rot. Clekie, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 

John Wilsone, younger, ... ... ... aooo 

George Patersone, burgis, ... ... ... 1368 

Adam Wilsone, ... ... ... ... 15 o o 

William Wilsone, younger, ... ... ... 1368 

Gorge Frier, called i9a//fi?, ... ... ... 1368 

Gorge Young, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 

Rot. Speiding, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 

Rot Broune, ... ... ... ... 20 o o 

Issobell Young, ... ... ... ... 20 o o 

William Wilsone, weifer, ... ... ... 30 o o 

James Wightman, ... ... ... ... 6 13 4 

Andro Scletter, ... ... ... ... 6 13 4 

Suma, 370 2 8 

COATTERS SOWING A BOLE OF CORNB. *"^^^^ 

Thomas Patersone, ... ... ... ... 10 o o 

Hew Young, ... ... ... ... 10 o o 

Jennet Blekie, ... ... ... ... 10 o o 

James Mophit, ... ... ... ... 12 o o 

William Patersone, weifer, ... ... ... 11 c o 

John Haldone, younger, ... ... ... 10 o o 

David Peca, ... ... ... 13 6 8 

Archibald Wilsone, ... ... ... ... 10 o o 

Jennet Andersone, ... ... ... ... 24 o o 

Jo. Hervie, ... ... ... 800 

Johne Gill, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 

Robert Frier, talior, ... ... ... ... 800 

Robert Morice, ... ... ... ... 800 

Adame Sadler, ... ... ... ... 800 

Johne Persone, ... ... ... ... 800 

James Clenmane, ... ... ... ... 800 

Richard Frater, ... ... ... ... 800 

Jo. Patersone, weifer, ... ... ... ... 800 

Jo. Claghorne (entered at Mert. 1656, and pays ;;^20 iti ye year). 

Thomas Couke, ... ... ... ... 800 



Forward, £ Scots 195 13 



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36 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

COATTBRS SOWING A BOLB OP CORNB, continued— 

Brought forward, £ Scots 195 13 4 
James Taiet, ... ... ... ... 800 

Thomas Watsone, gamer, ... ... ... 800 

Jennet Williamsone, ... ... ... ... 800 



Suma^ 219 13 4 

COATTBRS SOWING HALF A BOLB CORNB. 

John Dobsone, ... ... ... ... 600 

Georg Patersone, Wright, ... ... ... ^ 10 o o 

Thomas Watersone, weifer, ... ... ... 400 

Wm, Williamsone, ... ... ... ... 400 

Thomas Sadler, ... ... ... ... 400 

Wm. Furgriefe, ... ... ... ... 600 

Rot Ammers, ... ... ... ... 900 

Mai^rat Frater, ... ... ... ... 400 



Suma, 47 o o 

UNDER COATBRS THAT HES HOUSE AND YARD. 

Archibald Waker, ... ... ... 600 

Wm. Burne, ... ... ... ... 600 

Thomas Frater, ... ... ... ... 600 

Archibald Frier, ... ... ... ... 600 

Wm. Couke, drayster, ... ... ... ... 200 

Jennet Frier, ,.. ... ... ... 600 

Margrat Clekie, ... . ... ... ... 600 

Jennet Aldjoy, ... ... ... ... 100 

Jo, Sadler, ... ... ... ... ... i 10 o 

Jennet Clenmaine, ... ... ... ... 200 

Marrione Couke, ... ... ... ... 100 

David Pringill, ... ... ... ... 200 

Issobell Maben, ... ... ... ... i 10 o 

James Haldone, ... ... ... ... 1200 

Thomas Elphinstoune, ... ... ... ... 400 

Margrat Riddell, ... ... ... ... i 10 o 

Catrine Dods, ... ... ... ... 15 o 

Jo. Barrie, ... ... ... ... ... 600 

Robt Frier, miller ... ... ... ... 4 10 o 

James Donnelsone, ... ... ... ... 300 

William Murray, ... ... ... ... 200 

Robt Wilsone, •.. ... ... ... 100 

Robt. Frier, fletcher, ... ... ... ... 600 

Wm. Speiding, ... ... ... ... 13 6 8 



Suma 101 I 8 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 37 

The soume of the mailes wt in the toune of Gallaacheila 

extends in the year to ... ... J^ Scots 1016 1 1 o 

The three walkmilns payes in the year jQ^Q and 3 stone of napes, 60 o o 

The Comemillne of Gallascheils payes in the year 1656, 58 

boils victual! half meal, half malt, wt ane fat sow 

and two dousone of capons. 
The Nather Maines of Gallascheils payes this year 20 bolls of 

victuail halfe meill halfe beir wt ane dousone of fouls, 

halfe hens halfe capons, at the candilmest, 1658. 
The Over Maines payes this year 13 bolls of victual! the 

one halfe beir the other halfe meill at the candelmis in 

the 1658. 
The teind of Gallascheils wt Boldsyde payes this year 1656, 433 o o 

The Cus tomes payes this year 1656, the one half at mertimes, 

the other halfe at Whitsonday, extending to 
The teind land payes 
Mossilies and Clekburne payes this year 1656, wt a dousone 

of hens and a dousone of capons, 
Stokbrige payes wt a dousone of hens and a dousone of capons, 
Natherbarns payes wt the halfe of the Crowne, 
Boldsyde wt aught hens at Fastrines even, 
Cobels and fichings. 
The twelfe soume mailers are to pay for ther longe and short 

avriages in the year, 
The sax soume is to pay 

Everie twelfe soume mailer payes 2 hens at Fastrines even 

and 2 capons at pache. 
Everie sax soume mailer pays i hen at Fastrines even and 

I capon at pache. 
Coaters and under coaters payes ane hen at Fastrines even. 

The new conditiones that was set doune in Hew Scot of Gallascheils his 
tyme as follows, — 

The maillors they ar obliged ay and while the goodman take the land 
in his owne hand to work, to teill, harow, to sheir, to lead in alse 
muche land as will sow sixtine boUes whiche he reserves in his oune 
hand. As also they ar obliged to bring home the elding or any suche 
lying about the place, all this they are bound to doe wt out meat 
or drinke. 

At that time the Coaters was ordined to pay 40 sh. mor for the bole of 
corne sowing, and so was exenned from worke. 

And thes that hes halfe a bole of corne sowing payed 20 sh., and so was 
exenned from worke. 



215 








73 


9 





666 


13 





400 








666 


'3 





156 








40 








4 








2 









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38 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

It is stated that at one time portions of the barony were set 
apart for cultivation by the retainers of the House of Gala. These 
were called ** Wauker-riggs," some of which were near the Windy- 
knowe, while others were in the Eastlands. The occupiers of 
these rigs were bound to rise, on being summoned by the Laird, 
to repel English invasion, or perform any other military service 
that might be required. Others, who were under obligation to 
turn out on horseback, held much larger portions of that land 
now comprised in the farm of HoUybush. 



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CHAPTER VI. 

HITHERTO the references to Galashiels and vicinity, 
contained in contemporary records, have applied more 
to those who owned the land upon which the town 
is built than to the village or its early inhabitants. A stage 
in its history is now reached in which those men who hitherto 
had lived unknown, come to the front, and who might have 
pursued the even tenor of their way had not persecution forced 
them into fame. Under the government of Charles II. a 
moderate Episcopacy had been introduced as the established 
religion of Scotland, and the parish pulpits were filled with men 
whose opinions were orthodox, according to the interpretation of 
the Government. Naturally the people preferred their own 
pastors to the curates who had been forced upon them, 
but this the Government would not tolerate; conformity was 
demanded, and dissent was construed into rebellion. The 
Presbyterian ministers were forbidden to preach, and the people 
who attended their ministrations were put under heavy penal- 
ties. Prevented from meeting openly, they held conventicles, or 
field meetings, as opportunity afforded, at such times and in such 
lonely places as they imagined would secure them from an 
attack by the ** bloody Claver'se," or those with whom his 
name is so intimately associated. 

The first notice regarding the doings of the villagers refers 
to their contumacy in declining to attend the ministrations of 
the Episcopalian curate, Thomas Wilkie, who held the living of 
1665 Galashiels between 1665 and 1672. They preferred to go 
to Dryburgh to hear Henry Erskine, to the banks of the Gala 
to listen to the exhortations of John Blackadder, or to Ashie- 
stiel, a noted place for dissent at that period. This state of 
matters was tolerated for a short time only, and, for asserting 
their liberty of conscience, several weavers had to flee 

39 



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40 HISTOflY OF GALASHIELS. 

from Galashiels, One of these men was George Frater, a 
second, Adam Paterson, and a third was Thomas Wilson. 
They had their looms confiscated and their dwellings despoiled; 
Adam Paterson, in addition, having to pay a fine of 400 merks. 
Not content with a mere passive resistance, some of the villagers 
took up arms, and, at the battle of Bothwell Bridge, two of 
them, Robert McGill and Robert Young, were taken captive. 
1679 On the 24th June, 1679, twelve hundred prisoners, including 
those named and also several others who belonged to the 
village and district, were crowded into Greyfriars Churchyard in 
Edinburgh, and kept there for nearly five months. In that 
cheerless place their only couches were the graves, and their 
covering the sky; no shelter was provided either from rain or 
cold. Their clothing fell to rags, and the amount of food they 
received barely sufficed to keep body and soul together. When 
the month of November approached, an offer of liberty was 
made to all who would sign a bond of a certain kind, and some 
of them were tempted to yield. McGill and Young, however, 
refused, and they, along with 255 others, were driven down to 
Leith, and stowed in the hold of a vessel not capable of properly 
accommodating half their number. The ship sailed for the 
plantations, but a storm arose, and, when near the Orkney 
Islands, the hatches were fastened down. The vessel struck, 
and the crew left the miserable sufferers to drown. When the 
wreck broke up, McGill and a few others managed to reach land, 
but Robert Young perished a martyr to his principles, no less 
than those who suffered at the stake. 

<' These on tradition's tongue shall live, these shall 
On history's honest page be pictured bright 
To latest times." 

Another case occurred in the district, the heroine on 
this occasion being a young woman, the daughter of James 
Moffat, tenant of Netherbarns. Jean Moffat had attended 
a conventicle held in the district by one of the deposed 
Presbyterian ministers. She was summoned before the court at 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 41 

Selkirk, and, because she would not attend the ministrations of 
the curate at Galashiels, her father had to pay a fine in order 
to save her from imprisonment. Afterwards a second fine 
of 1000 merks was imposed upon him, and, subsequently, the 
dragoons appeared at Netherbarns and carried away everything 
they could lay their hands upon. Jean was conveyed to 
Edinburgh prison, and, in course of time, was transferred to 
Dunottar Castle. Here, with a number of others, she was 
thrust into a vault, ankle deep in mud, where several died; while 
some who endeavoured to escape were put to the torture. 
Eventually she was transported to New Jersey, and thence 
to New England. When the tide of persecution turned, Jean 
Moffat, in 1686, became the wife of James Eraser, a banished 
Covenanting minister. They returned to Scotland, where he 
became minister of Glencorse, in the Presbytery of Dalkeith; 
whence he was translated to Alness in 1695, where he died 
in 1711. 

On one occasion, in 1679, Claverhouse and his dragoons 
surprised a conventicle that was being held at Meigle Potts, 
conducted, it is supposed, by Mr Thomas Wilkie, the deposed 
minister of Lilliesleaf. The audience was principally composed 
of ladies from Torwoodlee, Ashiestiel, Galashiels, &c., who 
were cited to appear before the court, and were heavily fined, 
the minister being imprisoned on the Bass Rock. 

After Charles II. ascended the throne, George Pringle of 
Torwoodlee fell under the displeasure of the Government on 
account of his adherence to the Covenant. The Pringles. were 
among the first in the district who stood up for the Reformation. 
George Pringle fought for King Charles in nearly all the actions 
he had against Cromwell in Scotland, yet his services availed 
him nothing after the Restoration. For simply acting as a 
Justice of the Peace in the days of Cromwell, he was severely 
fined. He never conformed to Episcopacy; and, though taking 
no part in the struggles at RuUion Green, Drumclog, or 
Bothwell Bridge, his house was a sanctuary for all the perse- 
cuted who required shelter and hospitality. 



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42 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1 68 1 One dark December night in 1681 a man rode swiftly to 

Torwoodlee and asked for the master. He was heartily 
welcomed and entertained. The next morning a fresh horse, 
money, and a trusty servant were placed at his disposal, and he 
rode off. The stranger was the Earl of Argyle, who afterwards 
suffered as a martyr, and who, the previous day, had escaped 
from Edinburgh Castle. In his flight to England he was recog- 
nised, as well as the servant who accompanied him. 

Troubles began to fall thick and fast upon the House of 
Torwoodlee, and George Pringle had to go into hiding. Three 
years afterwards he was fined 5000 merks Scots on account 
of his refusal to attend the ministrations of the curate at 
Galashiels; and a second time, for the same reason, he was 
relieved of ;^2000 sterling. Shortly afterwards rumours of plots 
against the Government were rife, and several apprehensions 
were made in the district. George Pringle, however, having 
received timely warning, escaped to Holland. When the 
dragoons arrived and found he had fled they seized his son 
James, a lad of sixteen years of age, and carried him off to 
Edinburgh, where he lay in prison for three months. Eventually 
he was admitted to bail in a sum of ;^5000, but was not allowed 
to leave Edinburgh. Two months afterwards he was brought 
before the Council, presided over by the Duke of Qucensberry. 
He was asked to conform to the religion established by 
Government, but refused. He was also requested to give 
information regarding his father, but this met with no better 
success. The executioner was brought in with his instruments 
of torture. Queensberry roughly threatened if he did not give 
the desired information every bone in his body would be broken, 
every joint disjointed, his flesh ripped up, and boiling lead and 
oil poured into him. Young Pringle stood firm, however, and 
he was again imprisoned in Edinburgh Castle. In the absence 
of George Pringle, the lands of Torwoodlee were declared 
forfeited, and annexed to the Crown. They were afterwards 
bestowed upon Lieutenant-General Drummond, one of the 
Court party. At length the trials and sufferings of the family 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 43 

came to an end, and at the Revolution the estate was again 
restored to them. George Pringle was a member of the 
Scottish Parliament which voted the crown to William of 
1689 Orange. He died in 1689 much and deservedly regretted. 



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CHAPTER VII. 

FOR the folio wingf hundred years the principal source of 
information regarding* the village is contained in the 
Session records, belonging to the Parish Church. They 
throw light upon an interesting period in the history of the 
people, illustrating to a large extent the manners and customs 
of the villagers. Any one perusing these old minutes cannot 
fail to be struck with the extraordinary amount of labour and 
attention involved in having been a member of Kirk Session at 
that period. For some time after the Reformation in Scotland 
it was required that elders and deacons should 

** Be made every year once, — lest of long continuance of such offices, men 
presume upon the liberty of the Kirk." 

A different and much stronger reason is assigned in Knox's 
history, — 

** Quhilk burdane thay patientlie sustained a yeir and mair and then 
becaus they could not (without neglecting of their awen private houses) langer 
wait upoun the publict charge, they desyred that they micht be releaved and 
tliat uthers micht be burdened in thair roume. Quhilk was thocht a petitioun 
ressonabil of the haill Kirk." 

The usual practice at the present day is to take up no 
cases of scandal except such as are notorious, and cannot be 
overlooked without bringing reproach upon the cause of religion. 
Elders in those days took a very different view of their duty. 
To neglect even an alleged fault appeared, in their opinion, to 
connive at sin. All offences, therefore, of word or deed, such 
as swearing, defamation of character, falsehood, unchastity, 
drunkenness, fighting, stealing. Sabbath-breaking, and many 
others of a less heinous nature, were at once taken up and 
investigated. Offenders were visited with sharp rebuke and 
censure, administered by the minister in the presence of the 

44 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 45 

Session ; and, if the scandal was of a more aggravated character, 
before the assembled congregation during the course of the 
service. There were no police in the village at this period, and 
the Baron Bailie was the only functionary who had power to 
administer punishment to Ordinary offenders against the laws of 
the barony. The Kirk Session, however, performed all the 
duties devolving upon judge, jury^and police. Though their 
procedure may sometimes have been rigid and unwise, it was 
administered in good faith and without partiality. 

Offenders against ecclesiastical law were summoned by the 
"bedell,** and the case was gone into with all the formality of a 
modern court of justice. Witnesses were cited, put on oath, 
examined and cross-examined. Their evidence was taken in 
writing, which they were required to sign, though, in many 
cases, it was found that they were unable to write their own 
names. If the evidence did not clearly point to a definite 
conclusion, the alleged culprit did not get the benefit of the 
doubt. In these cases procedure was sisted, till Providence was 
pleased to shed further light on the matter. This, of course, to 
the accused, meant suspension from Church privileges till such 
time as the desired light was vouchsafed, or, as sometimes 
occurred, the party implicated requested the oath of Purgation 
to be administered in presence of the assembled congregation. 
The terms of this oath varied in different localities, the following 
being one form used on such occasions, — 

<* I, A. B., do swear by the great eternal God as I shall be judged at the 
last and most terrible day that I never was guilty of . . . Wishing that 
aU the plagues threatened and pronounced against the breakers of the law 
may be inflicted upon me, both in this life and the life to come, if this be not 
the truth that I have sworn. " 

The course of discipline for the different offences varied ; 
some were fined and publicly admonished, and others escaped 
with a rebuke administered in the presence of the Session. 
Some, while undergoing discipline, were allowed to occupy their 
usual seats; those whose offences were of a more aggravated 
and s<:andalous character, had to take up their position at the 



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46 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

*^ pillar," this being the term by which the public place of 
repentance was usually designated. Some offenders appeared 
in their ordinary Sabbath attire; others, in cases of grievous 
scandal, in sackcloth or a linen sheet. This penance continued 
at the pleasure of the Session, till they considered that the 
reproach had been removed. 

In all the various cases that occurred, the authority of the 
Session was never called in question, each one summoned 
appearing at the appointed time and place. The elders acted 
as a sort of inquisition, investigating into the ecclesiastical 
profession of all within the parish, and they were careful to 
exclude such persons as they considered unfit to consort with 
the parishioners. Strangers had to produce certificates from 
the parish they came from before they were permitted to take 
up their abode in the village; and any parishioner found 
harbouring any one who could not show the necessary 
document was dealt with by the Session, and, if contumacious, 
was handed over to the Sheriff. 

There was an old Act of Parliament which empowered sheriffs 
to appoint what were called Session bailies in parishes that had 
no resident magistrate. These bailies were members of the 
Kirk Session, and were commissioned to put certain laws 
affecting public morals into execution. This office was not 
usually coveted; one minister on the Borders reported to his 
Presbytery that those who were elected would not condescend 
to be the Session's bailie, and the heritors had to perform the 
duties by rotation. 

An enactment by the Session of Galashiels, in 1679, is 
very suggestive of the state of public morality prevailing 
at that time, and is to the following effect, — 

** Ye minister and elders ordained that the present treasurer receive from 
the parties to be married either 4 dollars to be kept till the three quarters of 
ane year expired, or 14 shillings Scot$ presently to be paid for the use 
of the poor, together with a sufficient cautioner, who must give a line under 
his hand, for 4 dollars, in case the parties be found g^iltie of breakings the 
crd^r of the Church," j. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 47 

Taught by experience, the Session evidently believed that 
a bird in the hand was worth two in the bush; yet, in many cases, 
they encountered great difficulty in obtaining payment of the 
fines, owing to the poverty of the people. 

Another entry deals with the case of several **wyflFs and 
maides,'' who were summoned to appear before the Session, the 
**wyfTs" for running races, and the **maides*' for **putting'* the 
cannon stone, and thereby gathering a crowd of people. The 
**maides" of the village over two hundred years ago must have 
belonged to the Amazonian order; and, for obvious reasons, this 
particular form of recreation has fallen into desuetude. But in 
modern outdoor gatherings, held in the summer months 
by the employees in the various factories, both **wyflFs and 
maides'' indulge in foot-racing to their hearts' content, none 
daring to make them afraid. 

Not only were the walk and conversation of those resident 
in the parish carefully supervised, but any who had occasion to 
be from home had to render an account of the manner they had 
spent the Sabbath. In 1648 the General Assembly decreed 
that, 

" Travellers, carriers, and others, whose business took them from home on 
the Sabbath, had to bring testimonials from the place where they rested these 
Sabbaths wherein they were from home.** 

It is evident that some of the villagers had been 
found guilty of breaking the Fourth Commandment, as three 
men and two women were ordered to give public satisfac- 
tion for having set out on the Sabbath with webs of **grey*' 
to Selkirk fair. Not only had the inhabitants been addicted 
to Sabbath-breaking in their anxiety to dispose of their goods, 
but, some of them were equally culpable in regard to the 
method of its production, as in 1764, William Wilson in the 
Netherhaugh, had to make a public appearance on account of 

" Allowing his wakmylne to goe to Sabbath morning at daylight, sq causing 
pifence to those within hearing.*' 



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48 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

This action not only constituted an offence against eccles- 
iastical law, but was also an infringement of an Act of the 
Scottish Parliament, passed in 1649, which made it penal for any 
one to work a ** walkmilne" between midnight and midnight 
on the Lord's day. 

Whether it was a work of necessity or mercy, does 
not appear, but for mending a sack upon the Sabbath day, 
Thomas Gill was adjudged either to pay a fine of 30s, or 
sit on the **drucken stool'' and suffer public rebuke. The 
culprit in this case had evidently been possessed of some means, 
as he preferred to pay the fine. In reading over the various 
cases which occupied the attention of the Session at this date, it 
is evident that they spent a considerable amount of their time 
and labour in striving to make clean the outside of the platter, 
which only can account for Janet Hyton being sharply rebuked 
for carrying in water on the Sabbath day. 

The parental care exercised over the parishioners was of 
the most searching nature, however frivolous might be the 
occasion. It is recorded that 

"The session ordered their officer to cite Joan Brown and Jean Sanders, 
servants in Galashiels, to appear before them in regard to their scandalous 
carriage with some souldiers then quartered in the town." 

As a matter of course, the offenders appeared, but the 
charge was found to be of such a trifling nature that they were 
rebuked before the Session and passed without further censure. 

1695 In 1695 the Session had evidently found their duties to be 

too onerous, and they resolved to appoint a magistrate who 
might put the law into execution throughout the whole parish. 
With this object in view, intimation was made from the pulpit, 
and the electorate met for the above purpose. These comprised 
the Lairds of Gala, elder and younger; the Laird of Middlestead, 
younger; the Laird of Brig Haugh; the Minister and the Session. 
The Laird of Gala acted as chairman, and after several candidates 
had been proposed, it was found that Robert K^rr of Prieston 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 49 

had been chosen by a majority of votes. James Scott, elder, was 
also appointed collector of the fines, and shortly afterwards 
this election was confirmed by '*the Sheriffs of Teviotdale 
and Forest, where the said paroch does lie." 

Nothing was allowed to escape the watchful care of the 
Session, reports of any kind, however vague, were sifted and 
enquired into. Rumours of a party having been guilty of drink- 
ing in George Haddon's house resulted in the said George, his 
wife, and John Kerr, his man, being interviewed by the minister 
and four of the elders. Their report stated that 

"They found that those persons who had been in George Haddon's (some of 
whom dwelt at the Rink) were waiting for the moon to rise, and that there 
had not been excess in drink, and some of the persons being well reported of, 
they were allowed to pass with a private rebuke from the minister." 

It is also recorded at the same time that the Session had 
heard of some persons in and about the town ''keeping up 
variance one at another, and not living in good Christian 
neighbourhood.'' The several elders were enjoined to take note 
how much of this conduct occurred in their respective districts, 
and to labour to get such variances removed, otherwise to report 
to the Session to have their concurrence for suppressing and 
reclaiming such behaviour. If the walk and conversation of the 
parishioners were not all that could be desired, it was not from 
the want of careful supervision on the part of the Session. The 
General Assembly recommended that 

" Every elder should have a certain round assigned to him, that he may 
visit it once a month at least, and report to the Session what scandals are 
therein, or what persons have entered without testimonials." 

In 1648 an Act of Assembly made it imperative **that all 
persons who flit from one paroch to another have sufficient 
testimonials." These, of course, had to be produced on request, 
and they at once showed whether the holder was married or single, 
whether under or free from scandal. This system would of 
itself have proved most effective in keeping the parish clear of all 

P 



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so HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

undesirable characters, but the elders of Galashiels, not content 
with the absolute power they already possessed, went a step 
1696 farther, as, in 1696, they are found declaring 

''That no strangers should be suffered to be employed in the toun or 
parrochine without producing testimonials, and that each elder in his bounds 
should be careful in disclosing the said persons. The Session called for ane 
account of what strangers now harboured in and about the toun, coming from 
the north and other places." 

After the various reports had been received, it was agreed 
that, if those who entertained these persons did not at once 
dismiss them, they would be cited to appear before the Session. 

The authority assumed by the Church Courts in those days, 
particularly the inquisitorial power exercised over individuals, is a 
most remarkable feature of the time, serving to show how limited 
in their application were the principles of civil and religious 
liberty, even by those who made the highest profession. 

It has been said that history repeats itself, and the following 
enactments passed by the Session two hundred years ago, bear 
a striking resemblance to the action of the local licensing 
authority within recent years, — 

*' The Session being mett (being Tuesday after preaching) they did pass 
ane act for suppressing of ungodliness and prophanity the tenor whereof 
follows. 

That they who continue drinking in taverns and ale-houses after ten 
o'clock at night, or idlie hant the same in daytime tippling therein beyond the 
necessitie of ordinarie and reasonable refreshment shall be held as drunkards, 
and they also who sell them drink to excess or beyond due time shall be 
censured. 

That they who suffer their children to play upon the Sabbath, and such 
who idlie vage abroad upon the Lord's day, and especialie in the time of 
public worship, shall be censured as Sabbath-breakers. 

That they who pass into taverns and ale-houses on the Lord's day wilfuUie 
and prcphanlie remaining from church in the time of worship, also 
they who receive and entertain them in their houses at such times, shall 
be repute and censured both as drunkards and prophaners of the Sabbath," 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 51 

The Kirk of Scotland never went the length of forbidding 
the use of liquor, nor of attempting to make abstinence 
from alcohol a condition of Church membership. She simply 
acted in accordance with the social usages of the time when 
total-abstinence had not emerged as a principle; but, on the 
other hand, she restrained as far as possible all excessive 
drinking by forbidding publicans from supplying liquor beyond 
reasonable requirements, or at unreasonable hours. 



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CHAPTER VIII. 

AS the Poor Laws had not yet come into existence, the 
Session, with the co-operation of the heritors, attended 
to the ingathering and distribution of the money raised 
for the relief of the poor. The state of the fund was regularly 
made up, and strict account was kept of the receipts and pay- 
ments. When the necessity for aliment was thought to have 
ceased, the recipients were at once cut off from all further 
participation in the fund. One minute quaintly records that 

^* Margaret Broad and Isobel Mather were scraped out of the poor's roll, 
in regard they can make a fend for themselves." 

1698 Anent the condition of the poor in 1698, it is recorded, — 

''The Laird of Gala, and Middlestead, and the Kirk Session met, and 
ordered that every heritor should maintain their own poor within their own 
land for a quarter of a year to come, likewise, to take care that some one be 
appointed to keep strangers out of their respective bounds. Also, that the 
house-holders within the toun should pay £2 Scots per week, and those out 
of the toun should pay 6s Scots per week upon the thousand merks within the 
Baronie, and appointed John Donaldsone, and James Paterson to be collectors 
thereof, and William Haddon to be officer under the said collectors, in expel- 
ling strangers and vagabonds out of the Baronie, for which there is allowed 
the said officer £^ Scots per quarter/' 

This is the first mention in the history of the town of a 
salaried official whose duties, to a certain extent, corresponded 
to those of a modern policeman. 

The following entry, dated 1751, shows the state of the 
fund, the number of poor in the parish, and the amount paid for 
aliment at that period in the town's history, — 

** The heritors proceeded to call for an account of the public funds or 
Poor's Box, and found the same to contain the sum of two thousand three 
hundred and sixty-seven pounds, six shillings, and tenpence Scots, consisting 

52 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 53 

of bonds, bills, and cash. Those infirm or in distress in the Parish amounted 
to SIX, to whom the following weekly pensions were allocated, — George Butler, 
in Kilknow, sixpence; John Small, with his wife and child, sixteenpence ; 
Margaret Robieson, sixpence ; Katherin Wilson, twelvepence ; Isabel Watson, 
sixpence; and Daniel Murray, sixpence." 

Sabbath observance seems to have exercised the minds of the 
minister and Session to a considerable extent. Under Popery 
and Episcopacy, the people had been accustomed to great liberty 
on the Sabbath. King James, **the Defender of the Faith," pub- 
lished a work called The Book of Sports^ in which he specified 
a number of amusements and field exercises which he thought 
might be lawfully and innocently enjoyed on that day. 
With the view of providing for the better defence of the 
country, practice with the bow and arrow was enjoined 
upon all able to take part in the exercise. The spear was the 
favourite weapon of the Scottish infantry at this time. Its 
length varied from fifteen to eighteen feet, and, from constant 
practice, it was handled with great dexterity. But it proved of 
little avail against the English bowmen; this the kings of Scot- 
land had realized, and they sought by every effort to induce the 
people to learn the use of the bow. 

In 1491 it was ordained that 

"In na place of the realme be vsit fut bauis, goufF, or vthir sic vnprofit- 
able sports, bot for comon gude and defence of the realme be hantit (practiced) 
bowis schuting and markis tharfore ordinit." 

One of the most precise Acts regarding the necessity for 
this practice states that 

''It is decreed and ordained that the displays of weapons be held four 
times in the year, and that the football and golf be utterly cried down, and not 
used. That the bow maiks be made, a pair of butts at every parish church, 
and shooting be practised. That every man shoot six shots at least, and that 
twopence be levied upon those absent, for drink to the shooters.'' 

The Bow Butts Close, which still exists, adjoining the old 
churchyard, doubtless points to the locality where at one time 



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54 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 

the villagers of Galashiels^ over twelve and under sixty years 
of age, found opportunity for practice with the bow and 
arrow on Sabbath afternoons at the conclusion of divine service. 

1699 In order that the Sabbath might be properly observed, it 

was ordained in 1699 

"That every Sabbath day the elder that collects the poor money at the 
church door, and the elder that collected the day before, should go in time 
of sermon to several places in the toun, as well in the forenoon as in the 
afternoon, and search and observe if there be any abuse committed, and when 
any is, that they report the same to the Session." 

Not only were the outdoor life and public behaviour of the 
parishioners supervised with a grandmotherly solicitude, but 
householders were hardly allowed to exercise their liberty in the 
privacy of their own homes. Another minute states that 

** The Session being informed that some masters of families do sit up late 
at night playing at cards, they appoint George Hall and John Donaldson to 
admonish them privately to desist from such a course." 

Tradition states that in 1699 a deadly plague visited the 
village and carried off a number of the inhabitants. Those 
afflicted were conveyed to the Darkheugh, where they were 
attended to by ** cleaners, " or individuals who had recovered 
from the malady. Those who died were buried near the same 
place^ where two large unhewn stones, called *'The Plague 
Stones,** marked the spot. 

That a visitation of this nature took place is beyond doubt, 
as shown by the Session records of September 24th, 1699, in the 
following terms, — 

' ^ The Session taking it into their consideration the great sickness that 
rageth in the country, wherewith many in this Paroch are visited with, do 
find it to be their duty that each elder frequently visit the sick in their 
respective quarters, with whom they are enjoined to pray with, confere, 
and discourse about matters tending to the edification and eternal welfare of 
their souls." 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 55 

In connection with these visitations, once so prevalent, but 
which have now almost disappeared in this country, the Stow 
Session records contain the following curious entry in regard to 
the first mention of a Galashiels doctor, — 

*' 29th August, 1632. The qlk day Andro Pringill in Gallosheils being hyred 
to haill the pyper, his wyff, and his bairne of ye seeknesses, he produced yame 
befor the Session saying yat they were haill and feir, and promeisit hereafter 
if ever yt seekness fell to yame agane he suld mend yame on his awn expensis, 
whilk he subscrivit with his hand at ye pen of ye clerk and witnesses under- 
subscrivand." 

A custom, now more honoured in the breach than the 
observance, used to prevail in the village, viz., the holding 
of what were styled ** penny weddings/' On these occa- 
sions all were welcome, provided they paid their share of the 
expense. The scenes of feasting, drinking, dancing, wooing, 
and fighting extended over two or three days, and, after the 
expenses were met, the balance was handed over to the newly- 
married couple. With the view of modifying the prevailing 
abuses, 

**The General Assembly considering the great profanitie and several 
abuses which usually fal forth at Pennie-Brydals, proving fruitful seminaries 
of all lasciviousnesse and debausherie, as well by the excessive number of 
people conveened thereto, as by the extortion of them therein, and licentious- 
nesse thereat, ordain every Presbytery in the Kingdom to take such speciall 
care for restraining these abuses, as they shall think fit in their several bounds 
respective." 

The Session therefore appointed that, after service on some 
Lord's day, public attention should be drawn to the desirability 
of altering this usage to a considerable extent. 

While the elders promulgated laws for securing good 
behaviour and enjoined the villagers to observe the same, they 
also took steps to satisfy themselves that their recommendations 
were properly observed; and, with this object in view, they 

** Appointed two elders to go successively, hereafter, through the taverns and 
alehouses after ten o'clock at night, when their affairs can allow, especially 
upon Saturday nights, and search and observe if there be any drinking in the 
said 'alehouses after the foresaid hour, and when they observe any 'to delate 
them to the Session." 



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56 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Those attending to any secular employment on the Sabbath 
were also strictly dealt with. It is recorded that Alexander 
Speedin, smith, and his servant, were charged with having shod 
a horse upon the Sabbath. Alexander appeared and admitted 
his guilt, and was publicly rebuked in his own pew the following 
Sabbath. On account of his youth, the servant was privately 
admonished. 

Grievances of every kind and degree were brought before 
the Session for redress. In one case James Speedin, in Whyt- 
bank, complained that Andrew Walker, merchant in Galashiels, 
had called him a thief. On being summoned, Andrew 
admitted the charge, and was ordered to appear before the 
congregation and receive public rebuke. Incompatibility of 
temper was likewise an offence. Thomas Mercer and his 
wife were sharply rebuked for scandalous disagreement betwixt 
themselves, and cautioned that, if such conduct should occur 
again, they would be called upon to make a public appearance. 
Adam Murray, skinner, likewise had to give satisfaction, by 
making a public appearance, for having defamed William 
Scott by calling him ** knave, villain, liar, rascal, thief, and 
loon." 

Notwithstanding the multiplicity of alehouses and the 
facility which existed for indulging to excess in liquor, drunken- 
ness does not seem to have prevailed to any great extent, it being 
particularly noteworthy how few cases of this nature are recorded. 
In one of these, Mary Donaldson, Kathrine Elliot, and Marion 
Williamson were charged with drinking in Will Elliot's house 
in the time of public worship on the Lord's day. The Session 
had the accused before them, but they stoutly denied having been 
drinking at all. Finding that the evidence would not sustain 
the indictment, they were admonished and dismissed. This case 
bears a remarkable likeness to a decision said to have been given 
by a Galashiels Magistrate in the early days of the town's 
existence as a police burgh. The dignitary in question found 
that the evidence in some trifling case was too weak to support 



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History of galashiels- 57 

the charge. In place of dismissing the case as not proven, he 
gravely remarked, ** Weel, as the case hasna been very clearly 
proved against e, a'U let 'e off for half-a-croon, an' 'e manna 
do't again.'* 

The passion for fishing appears to have been deeply 
ingrained in the villagers, and, as is too often the case at the 
present day, not content with their opportunities during six 
days of the week, it is repeatedly found that they were in the 
habit of borrowing a few hours from the seventh. In one case 
of this nature, the offenders, in a body, expiated their offence 
by appearing at the head of the foremost pew, below the common 
loft, to receive public rebuke. Were this procedure carried into 
effect now, a very considerable addition would require to be 
made to the space in question, in order to accommodate 
those guilty of the same transgression. 

The liberty of the subject is a familiar phrase, and 
any attempt to curtail or interfere with it is bitterly 
resented. The following enactment, of a comparatively recent 
date, shows the power wielded by the Church, even in the 
ordinary affairs of life, — 

** The Session being desirous to maintain order in the case of marriage, 
appoints that none shall be allowed proclaimation, till the minister, or in his 
absence two of the deacons, have given their consent." 

In 1699 the proportion of taxation for what was called 
communication of trade, payable to the town of Selkirk by the 
town of Galashiels, with the '*rest of the unfree traders in the 
shyre,** amounted to the sum of one shilling, to be divided by the 
said town, with concurrence of Lord Philiphaugh, or his 
brother, Mr John Murray, advocate. 



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CHAPTER IX. 

1 7 14 a tack of teinds was entered into between Sir James 
Scott, who is described as ** heritable proprietor of the 
lands and teinds, and others underwritten on the one part, 
and John Donaldson, present bailie in Galashiels; Alexander 
Murray, late bailie there; James Haldon, alias * Lord;' 
Thomas Paterson and George Pearson, merchants, there; John 
Mabon, alias *Duke,' indweller, there; Andrew Thomson, 
milnewright, there; George Small, wright; William Frier, 
weaver; John Paterson, maltster, alias *Townhead;' and 
James Watson, flesher, there, for themselves, and on behalf of the 
hail remanent tennents, occupiers and possessors of the arable 
ground and land of the town of Galashiels on the other part." 

It is evident from this document that Sir James Scott 
assumed that he had a right to the teinds; but in this he was 
mistaken, for he had only the right of presentation to the Parish 
Church. However, he let the parsonage teinds for nineteen 
years, so that the tenants might 

**Ingather their haill corn growing thereupon, conform to their respective 
possessions at whatsoever time they please during the tack." 

He also warranted them against all annuities of teinds and 
other public burdens. 

On the other part, the tenants bound themselves to pay 
for *41k twelve soume mailing'* the sum of twenty merks Scots, 
or ;^i, 2s 2|d sterling. For each *^sax soume mailing,'' ten 
merks Scots; and for a ''three soume mailing," five merks Scots. 
For each boll of corn sown, ''two merks and one half merk," 
about 2S 9^d sterling ; and so forth, proportionally, as they 
possessed. The tack was signed in presence of William 
Williamson, dyster, Galashiels; Adam Murray, skinner, there; 
and George Kirkwood, the writer of the deed. The annuity of 

58 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 59 

teinds referred to in the tack was payable to the Crown or 
others who might have acquired the right to it; but it had long 
ceased to be uplifted, the collections having been stopped by 
order of Charles II., in 1674. 

1722 In a manuscript, dated 1722, Galashiels is described as being 

** A market town, having a weekly market on Wednesdays, belonging to 
Scott of Gala, having a tolbooth in the middle of the town with a clock and 
bell, also possessing a cross, with a church and burying-ground at the east 
end." 

1723 In 1723 an extraordinary boating accident occurred in the 
locality, attended with a considerable loss of life, and is referred 
to in an old volume of local family history. In this book 
there is an engraving entitled ** The Carrow-weel and 
The Noirs, two celebrated salmon casts in the Tweed.'' The 
scene is taken from below Galafoot, looking down the river, and 
a foot-note contains the following statement, — 

"The rock in the water of the river in the foreground was the cause of a 
sad loss of life. The ferry boat, full of people going to Melrose fair, broke 
from its mooring and was split to pieces upon it. Twenty people were 
carried down by the current and drowned, ten saving themselves by hanging 
on to a horse, and this powerful animal landed them in safety." 

In these days bridges were few and far between, and ferry 
boats were necessarily used, but of a much larger size than 
anything to be seen on the Tweed at the present day. It would 
appear that the river was in high flood, and the accident was 
caused by the breaking of the mooring rope when landing, 
owing to the strength of the current. It is understood that the 
boat drifted from the pool called the *^Dead Water,'' having 
been brought down from Boldside for the occasion. 

This occurrence is referred to in the Session records, of date 
December 29th, 1723, which state, — 

''The Kirk Session of Galashiels having taken into their serious consider- 
ation the several tokens of the Lord's anger evidenced against this place, 
particularly that late awful dispensation of Holy Providence in the breach 
that he was pleased to make in several families in the paroch. They pray the 



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6o HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Lord would sanctify the stroke he had made upon the place, and to the 
persons the more immediately concerned, and that he would give grace to this 
people to make a due improvement of that dispensation." 

The Rev. Henry Davidson, the parish minister, preached 
the following Sabbath from Psalm xcvii. 2, ^* Clouds and dark- 
ness are round about Him, righteousness and judgment are the 
habitation of His throne/' This sermon was printed, and 
was entitled ^^Dark providences to be admired, not curiously 
inquired into/' 

One of the survivors of the accident was a Galashiels 
manufacturer named Williamson, who clung to a fragment of the 
boat, and was rescued about Bridge-end, He is said to have 
kept the piece of wood till his death, when, by his request, it 
was utilised in forming part of his coffin. He was buried in the 
old churchyard, where his tombstone, bearing the date 1763, was 
to be seen until recent years. Of the victims of the accident 
nine belonged to Galashiels, three to Boldside, three to 
Sunderlandhall, two to Appletreeleaves, one to Torwoodlee 
Mains, one to Whytbank, and one to Caddonlee. 

As might have been expected at a period when superstition 
was only relaxing its hold upon men's minds, the agency of the 
Evil One was strongly suspected in so tragic a case. An old 
woman who lived at Westhouses affirmed that she was in 
his company at the time, and that they sat upon the prow of 
the boat in the form of two corbies. She further added that the 
foul fiend treated her that evening, in the old steeple at Selkirk, 
to the fattest haggis she ever saw. Another of the sisterhood 
laid the '^wyte" on a son of Lord Torphichen, who was at that 
period credited with being a noted warlock. 

1728 In 1728 an appearance occurred, which possibly is the 

only instance of such a phenomenon in the district, and is 
thus described in a contemporary journal, — 

" Galashiels in Selkirkshire, March 4th. On Thursday last at eight at 
night there was perceived, in the air towards the north, an extraordinary 
meteor in the form of an arch, the side pointing to the earth dark and gloomy 
with the bright side upward, which disappeared about three next morning. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 6i 

On the I St instant it was again observed with extraordinary commotion 
in the air towards the north-east. The vapour was of a pale yellow colour, 
going in flakes of considerable breadth, with a whizzing sound distinctly 
heard, and the nearer it approached the zenith, the more it increased. About 
half an hour after four an earthquake was felt over all the place and some 
miles around, but it pleased God there was no damage sustained. " 

Near the close of the eighteenth century Galashiels 
was but a mere village; besides that of the manse, there 
existed only one slated roof. There was a small colony 
of weavers, many of whom were also ** bonnet lairds/* but 
they were poor and devoid of enterprise. No highways, 
in the modern sense of the word, existed, and travellers 
to Edinburgh were in the habit of using the channel of the 
Gala for a road when it was sufficiently dry. When the roads 
were constructed, shortly after the middle of the eighteenth 
century, Galashiels was even then so insignificant a place that 
the road from Kelso and Jedburgh to Edinburgh came by way of 
Melrose, crossing the Tweed at Westhouses by boat, through 
Lauder, and over Soutra Hill ; while that from Hawick went by 
way of Selkirk, Yair, Clovenfords, Crosslee, and on by Stagehall 
and Heriot. All the coals that came to Galashiels at that time 
were carried on the backs of horses, the now disused road 
on the south side of Gala between Crosslee and Galashiels having 
only been made in 1764. The first cart wheel in the district 
was made by Robert Aimers. On a tombstone erected to his 
memory in the old churchyard was a sculptured representation 
of an angel, with uplifted axe, keeping watch over a wheel. 

Up to the beginning of the present century there existed 
three old peels in the village, the principal one, said to have been 
a royal hunting lodge, was termed the ** Hunter's Ha\'' With 
the exception of Gala House, it was the best building in 
the district. It was removed in 18 16 to provide room for an 
addition to the parish school. Unlike the ordinary rude 
style of masonry in which the village was built, this peel was of 
immense strength, its walls being almost six feet thick. The 
doorway and windows were faced with red sandstone, similar to 



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62 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

that of which Dryburgh Abbey is built, and it had an excellent 
stone stair leading to the second floor. Another peel, of ruder 
construction, used by the retainers of royalty, stood in 
the garden now belonging to Dr Murray, adjoining the Parish 
Church. It was at one time occupied by Henry Watson, 
skinner, who, in consequence of the scarcity of water, removed 
to Buckholmside. A third tower, of similar construction, stood 
at the head of ^^ Cuddy Green,*' and was latterly occupied by a 
weaver named Frier, father of Robert Frier, manufacturer. 

From the ^* Hunter's Ha* ** a narrow lane led to a locality in 
the neighbourhood called the ** Touting Birk,*' whence, it 
is conjectured, the hunters were summoned from the chase. 
The scene is now changed, the ^^derke foreste** has disappeared. 
*' Magalt** lifts up its head as of yore, but now, almost to its 
summit, it is made ^'blythe with plough and harrow.** 

The ^'Hunter*s Ha**' was latterly inhabited by Willie Bold, 
a forester in the service of the Laird of Gala. He was 
one of those who had witnessed a detachment of the Highland 
army pass through the village in 1745. At that time the Laird, 
who adhered to the house of Hanover, caused all the cattle in 
the barony to be driven to Blakehope Burn for security. In 
his absence the Highlanders appeared, and Mrs Scott welcomed 
them by waving her handkerchief and calling out *^God save 
Prince Charlie, long live the Prince.** She hospitably enter- 
tained them, and they at length departed, highly pleased with 
their reception. 

The following story is related regarding Willie Bold, — 
When Lieutenant-Colonel Hugh Scott was promoted to the 
command of a coloured regiment in the West Indies, young 
Frank Bold accompanied him as valet. In reply to some of 
the neighbours, who had been enquiring after Frank's wel- 
fare, Willie informed them that ^* There were nae Ethiopians 
there but the Laird and oor Frank.*' Old Willie had got 
slightly mixed, doubtless he meant Europeans. Neither of them 
returned. Both died of fever, and sleep far from the banks of 
their native Gala, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 63 

Willie Bold's well was about ten yards distant from the 
east end of the peel, the road which led to it being about four feet 
wide and fenced on both sides with a high stone wall. The 
well was circular and about three feet deep, but in order to 
reach the water, it was necessary to go down two steps. Here 
the village children of a past generation quenched their thirst, 
lifting the water with a **tinnie,'* which was always returned to 
Willie's house, where it remained till again required. 

In the earlier years of the town's history its fairs were 
important events in the calendar. The first of these was held on 
Midsummer day, the second on the 29th September, and the 
third, called Martinmas fair, on the first Tuesday of November, 
the right to hold which was obtained by Act of Parliament in 
1693. Through course of time these dates had been altered, 
and a fourth fair inaugurated. About sixty years ago the fairs 
were held on the third Wednesday of March, 8th of July, loth 
October, and the third Wednesday of November. 

The March fair was attended by a large gathering, and a 
considerable amount of business was done in seed corn, cattle, 
linen, and other goods. The Midsummer fair was of a general 
character, and attracted people from all parts of the south of 
Scotland. It was regularly proclaimed from the Cross, at that 
time by Walter Blaikie, the Baron Bailie's man, at twelve 
o'clock on the day of the fair, in the following terms, — 

*• Oyez! OyezI Oyez! Forasmuch as in his majesty's name and authority 1 

given and granted to Scott of Gala, Esquire, and to his baron bailie 

depute, to hold a free fair yearly on this 8th day of July, I hereby prohibit and 
debar from this fair all false weights and false measures, all cutters of purses, 
Egyptians and randy beggars, and that none trouble and molest this fair for 
auld debt or new debt, auld feud or new, and this fair is to continue for the 
space of eight days. God save the King." 

A roll was then beaten on the drum by Tam Tamson, 
which concluded the ceremony. 

The Cross in those days stood upon a circular base 
ascended by a flight of steps. A kind of balcony projected, from 
which the proclamations were made. This portion was removed 



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64 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

before the Cross itself was taken dowp. - The shaft of the Cross 

rested on a pedestal on the top of the circular base, being 

surmounted by a dial, over which was an iron rod carrying a 

vane, with the date 1695, and the initials J. S. cut through 

the plate. The whole erection was removed about 1820, the 

shaft being deposited at the back of Gala coach house, where it 

lay till it was again erected by subscription in 1867. It occupies 

nearly the same position as it did originally, in front of the 

Baron Bailie's office, once the Cloth Hall. On the other side 

stood the Tolbooth and the Glassite meeting-house; below 

was a school kept by old Jeanie Craw, who initiated young | 

Galashiels into the mysteries of the horn book, *^ Reading made 

easy,'' and the plain truths of the Bible. At the same time the 

female portion of the pupils were taught to sew, knit, and spin. 

Next door to the school was a well-known alehouse, bearing the 

sign of the ^^ Ship," kept by a Boniface named Dalgliesh. 

The fair held in October appears to have been of a purely 
local character, owing its origin, in all probability, to the annual 
observance of the Michaelmas festival and attendant holiday. 

The Martinmas fair was principally a mart for black cattle, 
the fleshers in the village and district assembling and killing a 
large number of them at the ^^auld Tolbooth," where the 
villagers, according to the old custom, were wont to purchase 
their *^mart." This, together with their meal, formed their 
staple provision for the ensuing winter. 

This fair was held on the first Tuesday of November till 
about 1786, when the day was changed, with the result that the 
trade was transferred to St Boswells, and the Martinmas fair, in 
course of time, dwindled into oblivion. 

While other institutions have risen and flourished, the once 
busy markets have degenerated into mere names. Three or four 
^^ sweetie krames," a dilapidated shooting gallery, and an Aunt 
Sally now form the centre of attraction ; the erstwhile 
busy crowd has disappeared, and their places are occupied by 
a score or two of small boys and girls. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS- 65 

Early in the eighteenth century the fleshers of the village 
formed themselves into an incorporation, the following being a 
copy of their seal of cause. It is of interest on account 
of the light it throws upon the trade practices and powers 
possessed and exercised by the Lord of the Manor nearly two 
hundred years ago. 

" At Galasheills the eleventh day of October, seventeen hundred and six 
years, and of her majesty's reig^n the fifth year, 

The which day anent the petition and supplication given unto Sir James 
Scott of Gala, heritor and proprietor of the toun and village of Galasheills, be 
William Elliot, Thomas Watson, James Haldoun, Thomas Scott, Thomas 
Gill, and William Cairncross— all ffleshers and inhabitants within the said 
toun of Galasheills; mentioning that, Where it being the ancient and laudable 
custom of other touns and villages, (for the weell, utility, and profite of the 
samen indwellers and inhabitants thereof, and for the better government of 
incorporations thirein, to have Deacons and other office men within the samen 
created, elected, and chosen. Which being done would not only tend to the 
promoting and advancing the interests and credit of the said incorporation, 
but would be ane encouraging mean to them to imploy themselves in 
furnishing" the said toun and villag'e of Galasheills and country thereabout 
with good and sufficient ffleshers. And therefore craveing that the said Sir 
James Scott of Gala would give them libertie and licence to elect and choise 
ane Deacon and quarter-masters within themselves for the management and 
government of the said incorporation, as the samen petition and supplication 
in itself purports. Whilk petition and supplication above mentioned being by 
the said Sir James Scott taken to his serious consideration, with the articles 
following, given in by the petitioners above mentioned. And being read in 
his presence and he being therewith weell and ryplie advised. The said Sir 
James Scott ffand the said petition and supplication relevant and the said 
articles to be profitable and good, not only for the saide ffleshers' craft, but 
also for the utility, profite, and advantag of the said toun and village of 
Galasheills, and our sovereign lady*s leidges. And therefor has given and 
granted, and by the tenor hereof gives and grants to the petitioners above 
named and their successors of the said trade fful and ffree libertie to meet 
amongst themselves yearly before their election at Michaelmas and ther to 
prepare and give in to the said Sir James Scott, his airs and successors, ane 
leitt of three persons, who shall be ffremen within the same trade. And that 
they shall make choice of (by voteing) to be their Deacon, that out of the said 
leitt, the said Sir James may choise ane Deacon with power thereafter to the 
Deacon swae to be choisen, and the ffreemen of the said craft and trade to 
meet amongst themselves, and choise their quarter-masters and other office- 
bearers within th$ said trade, for whom they will be answerable, beginning 



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66 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

the first election at and against the twelfth day of the eighth month of October, 

and yearly at Michaelmas thereafter, in all tyme comeing. And has statute 

and ordained the articles underwritten to be observed and kept by the persons 

above named, and their successors, as perpetual laws ordinances amongst 

themselves in all tyme comeing under the pains and penalties after mentioned. 

And the said Sir James Scott has interponed his authority hereunto and 

ordains execution to (follow hereupon. And for confirmation of this present 

Act, that the said Sir James his common seall bee hereto appended. Of the 

whilk articles and priviledges the tenor follows, and it is thus fiirst, it is statut 

and ordained likeas the said Sir James statuts and ordains that the craftsmen 

of the said trade and craft have power to make up the leitt of the persons to 

be Deacon foresaid, the samen being always ffreemen of the said craft, and 

that besides within the said toun and village of Galasheills, and give it on to 

the said Sir James for the end above mentioned, with power also to the said 

Deacon and craftsmen of the said craft to elect and choise their officer-men 

within the said craft for keeping good order among themselves. 

Item, — That no man use and occupy the said craft as masterman and fFreeman 

until the tyme he be admitted ffree with the said craft, and shall pay 

ten pounds Scots for his upsett under the pain and penaltie of the like 

soume often pounds Scots to be payed by the Deacon of the said trade 

and craft to the said Sir James or those having his warrant to uplift 

the samen. 

Item, — That no fFreeman of the said craft receives an apprentice for less than 

five years under the pain of their fForfeiting their libertie. 
Item. — That no masterman of the said craft gives harbour to ane other man's 
apprentice or servant within the tyme of his apprenticeship or service 
under the pain of ffourtie shillings Scots, to be paid by the tyster 
(enticer) and as much be the apprentice and servant tysted to the box 
for the use of the trade. 
Item, — That everie fFreeman pay sixteen shillings Scots yearly as weekly 
pennies proportionatlie at Martinmas and Whitsunday for the use of 
the poor. 
Item, — ^That ilk fFreeman that comes not to the quarter meetings being laullie 

warned shall pay sixteen shillings Scots. 
Item,, — That no fFreeman or any of his family disobey or deforce the Deacon's 
officer under the pain of fourteen shillings Scots for the use of the 
poor. 
Item, — That no fFreeman of the said craft shall exact of unfree men within the 
said toun and village the soume of sixteen shillings Scots yearly at 
Martinmas for the weekly pennies. 
Item., — That no unfree man break his own beef, bacon, or mutton excepting 
legs for sale, but that they cause ffreemen doe the samen for payment 
of every nolt and swyne four shillings Scots, and in case any fFreeman 
refuse to break th$ samen for the said soume, in that caice the 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 67 

Deacon of the said craft shall pay as ane unlaw for himself and the 
craft the soume of fourteen shillings Scots, the equal half thereof to 
the said Sir James, and the other to the party damnified, and the 
Deacon to take the unlaw of the refuser. 

Item, — That the Deacon and craft and their officers have the concurrence of 
ane the said Sir James Scott, and his baron officer, to put their acts 
into execution. 

Item. — ^That the distribution of the penalties above and under-written be by the 
advise of the said Deacon and quarter-masters allernerly (only) for 
the tyme. 

Item, — When the Deacon and quarter-masters or remanent brethren of the said 
craft shall upon any occasion convene together, if any of them shall 
upbraid or molest ane and other be word or deed, blood or any 
criminal fact excepted, the offender shall be censured by the Deacon 
and quarter-master, as effeirs not exceeding five pounds of unlaw 
to be payed to the box for the use of the poor. 

Item, — That if any apprentice shall commit the filthie fact of ffornication 
at any time within the years of his apprenticeship, he shall serve two 
years after the expiry thereof, without any ffee or bountith, but for 
meat and drink. 

Item, — That no craftsman or ffreeman, within the craft, complain upon any 
other ffreeman, or pursue him in the court before the Baron Bailie or 
any other judge, the soume being within five pounds Scots, but that he 
first complain to his Deacon under the pain of fourteen shillings Scots, 
the one half to their own box, and the other to the said Sir James 
Scott, But if the complainer get not justice of payment within 
twenty days, he shall have libertie to pursue before the said Bailie, or 
any other judge. 

Item, — The said Sir James Scott gives full power to the Deacon of the said 
craft, or any in his name, to search the mercatts and ffairs for 
insufficient meatt in tyme comeing, and to confiscat the samen for the 
use of the poor, and to punish the faulters, the said Sir James Scott 
and his officer concurring. 

Item, — ^That none have voice at the election of the Deacon, except those who 
are ffreemen and actuallie resides within the said toun and village, or 
privlidges thereof. 

Item, — ^That no stranger or other person, whatsomever, that serves not his 
apprenticeship within the said toun, or marries not ane ffreeman's 
daughter within the trade, shall have any libertie or ffreedom of the 
said trade, without consent of the haill bretheren thereof. 

Item, — That the trade shall yearly, in tyme comeing at the election of their 
Deacon, have libertie to nominat and choise two or three of their own 
number as comprysers of any goods or others the trade shall have 



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68 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

occasion to compryse in satisfaction of any private debt or fynes 
within five pounds within themselves. 
Item, — The said Sir James limits and appoints the mercatt place for killing 

and selling of meatt, to be where it has been formerly. 
Hem. — ^That ane (freeman's relict shall have libertie to keep shop during her 

widowhood. 
Item, — That no ffreeman's sone be admitted to the liberties of the said trade, 
excepting ane ffreeman's eldest sone, unless he serves his apprentice- 
ship. 
In Testimonie whereof thir presents, written by William Ancrum, 
servitor to Andrew Waugh, of Shaw, Toun Clerk of Selkirk; James Mitchel- 
hill, sherrif substitat of the sherrifdom of Selkirk; Mr George Adam, school- 
master, Galasheills; and the said Andrew Waugh and William Ancrum. 
Likeas the said Sir James, his seall is hereto appended." 

Then follow the signatures and seal. 



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CHAPTER X. 

UNDER the singular name of **The Penal Statutes*' there 
existed an old practice whereby the inhabitants of the 
village had to pay one penny of a fine, at the Bailie's 
Court, for every time they *Moupit the Laird's dykes." At 
Candlemas it was customary for the tenantry to dine with the 
Laird in one of the inns, and these fines were devoted to the pay- 
ment of the reckoning. It was also usual to elect annually six 
** birliemen," as they were termed, to act as a jury in the Bailie's 
Court. The dignity and social standing of these officials may 
be estimated from the condition of service, viz., the possession 
of a ^^ twa-soume mailen," or sufficient land to maintain three 
sheep. The Birlie Court was held at the Cross every Saturday, 
where all questions relating to property and trespass within 
the barony were decided. 

Several other old and obsolete practices show in a lively 
manner that the Baron had a very great power within his juris- 
diction. In granting feus for building purposes, the following 
conditions were sometimes attached, — The -feuar had to spin 
one pound of lint, pay one darg, or one hen yearly, or, at the 
option of the Laird, pay one shilling and eightpence in lieu of 
the spinning, one shilling for the darg, or day's work, and one 
shilling for the hen — all sterling money. In addition the feuar 
was bound to grind all his corn, malt, and wheat at the 
Galashiels mill, and also buy at the same mill all the meal he 
required, provided it was as good • and cheap as it could be . 
purchased in the Galashiels market. 

During the winter, when frost prevailed, the inhabitants 
were obliged to turn out at the ringing of a bell to **redd the 
mill dam," or to break the ice so as to prevent it from freezing 
over. On certain occasions it was customary for the **haill toun" 

69 



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76 HiSTORV OF GALASHIELS. 

to assemble in front of the Bailie's door. Headed by that 
functionary, they adjourned to a suitable field, and indulged in a 
game of shinty. Those rejoicing in the Christian names 
of Hab, Jock, Tam, Andrew, Adam, and Dan played against 
all the others in the village. In time of frost the same 
procedure was gone through, and the villagers assembled 
at ''the place*' to enjoy the sport of curling. At mid-day the 
minister regaled the players with a dish of brose, which was 
prepared and sent out from the manse. 

In those days superstition was rampant, and the villagers 
firmly believed in every description of evil spirits. The sepulchral 
aisle in the old churchyard, belonging to the Gala family, was 
credited with opening of its own accord for nine nights before the 
death of a Laird. The following story is told in connection with 
this building, — It was customary for a party of **drouthy cronies*' 
to meet round the hospitable hearth of one of the village ale- 
houses, when strange stories were rehearsed concerning the doings 
of ghosts, boggles, and fairies. On one occasion the usual 
company was assembled amongst whom was Tam Sanderson, 
the shoemaker. The old tales were being re-told, when, 
stimulated perhaps by the generous liquor he had imbibed, he 
laughed their fears to scorn and declared his readiness to go 
anywhere in spite of deil, goblin, or ghost. He was at once 
challenged by the blacksmith to go along to the Auld Kirk and 
leave an awl sticking in the floor of the Laird's haunted pew, 
which might testify on the following day that he had fulfilled his 
mission. This proposal was more than Tam anticipated, 
and he was somewhat staggered by the suggestion; but, seeing no 
way out of the difiiculty, except by admitting that he was afraid, 
he screwed his courage to the sticking point, and procuring an 
awl he started very reluctantly to fulfil his idle boast. The 
party followed, but on arriving at the churchyard gate they 
halted to await his re-appearance. 

The night was dark, a wintry gale was moaning through 
the leafless trees on Gala Hill, from which at intervals came the 
eerie hoot of the midnight owl, when, with quaking heart and 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 71 

quiverings limbs, Tarn started on his dreary mission. As he made 
his way to the kirk door, the old tombstones on either hand 
appeared, to his heated fancy, as ghostly visitants from another 
world. The sough of the wind, as it sighed across the grassy 
mounds, sounded in his ears like weird whisperings from the lips 
of unseen witnesses. The door was at length gained, and he 
began to grope his darksome way towards the haunted pew. 
The dreaded spot was reached, and, in a state bordering upon 
frenzy, he stooped down and drove the awl to the haft in one 
desperate blow. Hurriedly endeavouring to rise, he was firmly 
held by some invisible power, and, filled with the awful thought 
that he had fallen into the clutches of the Evil One, his yells 
resounded through the midnight air, striking terror into the 
hearts of the company congregated outside the gate. An awful 
silence followed. The startled comrades, almost frantic between 
fears for their own safety and the dire danger of their 
neighbour, hurriedly, and with sinking hearts, made their 
way to the kirk door. It was no sooner reached than another 
appalling yell resounded through the building, scattering 
them right and left. The miller in his agitation clutched wildly 
at the bell rope, with which he had come in contact as it 
dangled within his reach, causing the bell to give voice in its 
loudest tone. The unusual sound aroused the villagers, who 
soon formed a crowd within the churchyard. A couple of 
worthies, engaged in **burning" Gala, were attracted by the 
commotion, and, with blazing **cruzie" and shouldered leister, 
they hastily made their way up the Kirkcroft Park and 
along the Bow Butts to the place of attraction. In the blazing 
light courage returned, and, with the **cruzie'' held on 
high, and the leister projected well to the front, the reckless 
fishers entered the church with the crowd at their heels. The 
old walls and roof were lit up with the unwonted glare, — along the 
passage, on the pews and the pulpit, the shadows fitfully fell, 
but save the sound of their own footsteps all was silent as the 
grave; no grim spectre, goblin, or wraith was to be seen. The 
pew was reached, and the helpless shoemaker was observed, pale 



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72 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

and silent, extended motionless upon the floor. Eager hands 
were stretched out to raise him, and willing feet ran to sum- 
mon medical assistance lest haply a spark of life might yet 
flicker in the unconscious victim. On endeavouring to remove 
him, they only succeeded after some considerable difficulty, when, 
lo, amid the unextinguishable laughter of the erstwhile terror- 
stricken company, it was discovered that in his blind terror he 
had driven his awl not only into the floor, but also through 
his stout leather apron, which successfully resisted his frantic 
efforts to escape. He was carried out and soon recovered. 
The village gossips got a fresh subject for discussion in which 
the shoemaker took no part; for the future he stuck to his last, 
and the village ale-houses knew him no more. 

Near the site of the Round Tree Bridge, leading from 
Bank Street to Gala Park Road, there stood a grand old elm, 
called the *' Round-about Tree.*' At that time, when the site 
of Bank Street was called the *' Swine Park'* or the ''Miller's 
Park," the road to the ''Auld Toun" went past it. This road 
was termed the ''Orchard Loan,*' and was credited with being 
a resort of fairies. An old residenter, named George Brown, 
lived in its vicinity. He was an early riser, and at the dawn 
of a fine summer morning, as he stepped out into the open air, 
his ears were greeted with strains of sweet music. Shaping 
his course toward the direction whence the mysterious sounds 
proceeded, he came in sight of the " Round Tree,*' where he 
clearly beheld, in the grey light, scores of hares on their hind 
legs dancing in a ring round one much larger than the rest. 
He saw no musician, nor did he stay to investigate. Realising 
his position, he turned quickly away as he said, "It wasna cannie 
to let them see me, or disturb them in their frolics.'* These 
assemblages were thought to be composed of individuals who 
possessed the power of transforming themselves into the 
likeness of hares, and this tradition, regarding the sight seen 
at the Round Tree, was believed with a sincerity that to doubt 
or discredit would have been considered an insult to the 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 73 

narrator of the story. The old tree also served as a trysting 
place, 

** Whar mony a simmer e'en 
Fond lovers did convene, 
Thae bonny bonny gloamin's that are lang* awa'." 

Its name was a familiar word amongst the men and women 
of a bye-gone generation, but the necessities of modern life 
possess no sympathy with the memorials of lang syne. Standing 
in the way of the march of improvement, it was cut down, and 
an enterprising tradesman converted it into articles of furniture, 
which now adorn the mansions of those whose forefathers had 
played under its shade. 

Early in the seventeenth century, a noted character lived in 
the village, who was known as **the whistler." He was a joiner 
and undertaker, and was so fond of his own sweet melody that he 
did not even cease whistling when going home with a coffin. 
This indecorous behaviour had been tolerated by the villagers for 
a considerable time, till at length, in order to put a stop to it, they 
"daured'' him to whistle across the Bakehouse burn, and past 
the Round-about Tree at midnight. Nothing daunted, he set 
forth with a light heart, whistling as usual, but on reaching the 
tree his melody suddenly ceased; something **no' canny'* 
appeared to him, and from that night he was never heard to 
whistle again. 

The sylvan banks of the Linn, or Lint, Burn was another 
spot favoured by the **good people." On moonlight nights the 
shrill sound of fairy music was sometimes heard, and many 
could be found to testify that the fairies had been seen dancing 
in their charmed rings. 

Even the ** minister's man" was a devout believer in fairies. 
Coming home from Boldside one night, he was startled by a 
strange mysterious whispering at his ear. He was so impressed 
with the idea that something **uncanny" was accompanying him 
that he dared not turn his head, but took to his heels and ran 



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74 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

all the way home, where, panting and breathless, he discovered 
that the supposed sprite was only the rustling of a straw sticking 
to his hat. 

While there is no record of Galashiels having possessed a 
genuine witch, it was at one time customary to attribute some- 
thing **uncanny" to those who had a little more common-sense 
than their neighbours. One of these old females having died, 
the day of her funeral happened to be very stormy. It was 
affirmed by those who carried the coffin that sometimes its 
weight was such that they could scarcely carry it, while at other 
times it became so light they could hardly keep it from flying 
off. One of the villagers, who was busily employed in en- 
deavouring to save the 'Hheekin' '' of his house from being carried 
away by the violence of the wind, had a little boy who came out 
to see the funeral pass, and such was the strength of the gale that 
he was lifted bodily off his feet and carried some distance. 
After securing his son's safety, the father was heard denouncing 
the silent occupant of the coffin as **an auld witch, no' content 
wi' blawin the ^ theekin' ' off the hoose, but had also to blaw 
away the bit callant." 

Up to the end of the eighteenth century, it was the habit 
of the villagers to assemble at the Cross before sunrise on the 
first day of May, O.S., and proceed to the nearest place in the 
neighbourhood from which a view could be obtained of the 
summit of Williamlaw Hill, known of old as '' Baal's," or 
'* Bel's Cairn." From their position they watched the lighting 
of the Beltane fire on the hill top, where, as was customary in 
many other localities in Scotland, the old Pagan rite was still 
observed. The simple, superstitious villagers were under the 
belief that the fire was lighted by Bel, the sun god. 

More recently the morning in question was observed by 
the youths and maidens of the town, who proceeded to the 
fields before sunrise, and washed their faces with dew. To this 
practice some ascribed a happy influence for the ensuing twelve 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 75 

months, while others considered that it secured some sort of 
medical virtue. The custom is thus described by Ferguson, — 

** On May day in a fairy ring 
We've seen them round St Anthonys spring, 
Frae grass the caller dew-draps wring 

To wat their een. 
And water clear as crystal spring, 

To synd them clean." 



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I 



CHAPTER XI. 

1771 yN 1771 the village commenced to extend, and in the 
following twenty years there were erected on the haugh-land 
bordering Gala thirty-two houses in the parish of Gala- 
shiels, and thirty-nine in the parish of Melrose. This exodus 
from the parish of Galashiels was caused by the ground in 
Melrose parish being better adapted for the erection of factories 
for the manufacture of cloth. 

In addition to those engaged in the staple trade, there were 
ten persons employed as skinners and tanners, who paid a duty 
of from ;^66 to jCgS annually upon the amount of leather 
produced. There were also seventeen persons who wrought in 
wood, as cabinetmakers, carpenters, wheel and mill wrights. 
A considerable trade was also done by purchasing timber, and 
blocking it out into ploughs, carts, rakes, etc., which were sold 
to farmers and plough and cart wrights in various parts of the 
country. There were three blacksmiths, three bakers, five shoe- 
makers, and nine tailors. The number of merchants, or shop- 
keepers, could hardly be stated, as nearly every person bought, 
sold, and bartered. There were fifteen licenced houses in the 
village, yet the people were sober and industrious in the extreme. 
Few were addicted to tippling, and it was very rare to observe a 
tradesman under the influence of liquor. In regard to church 
attendance, the number of communicants belonging to the Estab- 
lished Church was two hundred; while there were also adherents 
professing the Burgher and Anti-Burgher principles, and a few 
belonging to the Relief Church. There were also some Glassites 
and Baptists, besides several who disclaimed attachment to any 
sect whatever. In connection with the dissent that had arisen 
in the village, Dr Douglas stated that he had made no inquiry 
regarding the different tenets held, or the exact number of those 
adhering to them, from an opinion, that, *' while they are 

76 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



77 



peaceable members of society, and live soberly, righteously, 
and godly, the speculative points on which they may differ are 
of very little importance." 

The following list contains the names of the feuars who 

170 held land within the barony in 1796, together with the rental of 

fields and feus for houses, as well as that for houses and yards, — 



The Corn Mill, Thos. Cleghorn, 
Swine Park, Do. do. 2 

Stoney Quarter, Rev. R. Douglas, 24 
House and yard, his man- 
servant. 
House and yard, Robert Amers, 
Leetand, Catbog and House, 

Aitchson & Aimers, ... 12 o o 

House and yard, Tibie Amers, 
Do. do. Simon Aitchson, 
Do. do. Janet Aitken, 
Do. do. J. Aitchson, Jr., 
Crooveyards and houses, 

Blackie & Paterson, ... 3 o o 

H ouse and yard, David Ballantyn^, 
Widow Ballantyne, 
J. Brown, weaver, 
George Blackie, 
George Brown, 
Brotherston & 

Sanderson, ... 
James Blaikie, 
James Brown, 
James Blackie, 
William Berry, 
A house, James Brown, merchant, 
House and yard, William Bold, 
Do. - do. Wm. Brown, Jr., 
Do. do. Betty Bullar, ... 
Do. do. Thos. Clapperton, 
Do. do. Widow Clapperton, 
House, Widow Craig, 
Famyknow and Houses. James 

Crai^, ... .,. 26 o 10 



Fields and House. 
£ s, D. £ s. D. 
50 10 o 
6 o 
> 4 



Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 



House and Yard. 
;^ s. D. £ s. D. 





12 





2 10 


• 


9 


3 


3 9 


12 








. 


8 


6 


2 10 


. 


18 





5 8 




ID 





2 10 


I 


10 





5 8 


8 










10 





2 10 




8 


6 


2 10 


I 


12 





7 8 




15 





3 'o 




H 





3 10 


I 


I 





5 8 




16 





4 8 


I 


10 





8 6 




16 





4 8 


I 


5 





10 8 




7 









18 





4 10 


I 


5 





6 8 




7 





2 


I 


I 





5 8 




6 


2 


2 6 




6 


8 





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78 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



2 houses and yards, G. Clapperton, 
House and yard, And. Clapperton, 
Caldside, Crooveyards, etc., 

John Clapperton, 
House and yard, William Craig, 
Do. do. Geo. Chisholm, 
Do. do. Wm. Chisholm, 
Do. do. Adam Cochran, 
House, James Craw, 
Caldside, with houses and yard, 

William Dobson, 
House and yard, John Dobson, 
Do. do. Widow and 
Simon Dobson, ... 
House and yard, John Dobson, 

weaver, 
2 houses and 2 yards, J. Dalgliesh, 
House and yard, Janet Dobson, 
Do. do. Widow Donaldson, 

Do. do. Robert Frier, 

Do. do. John and Robert 

Frier, ... 
2 houses, John Fairgrieve, wright, 
House, John Fairgrieve, pigman. 
House and yard, Wm. Fairbairn, 
Wanlessmouth, with houses and 

yards, Henry Gill, 
House and yard, Andrew Gray, 
Do. do. David Grieve, 

House, John Graham, ... ^ 

House and yard, Robert Gill, 
William Gill, 
Mary Hunter, 
William Hislop, 
James Hislop, 
Robert Hatlie, 
Broomiebrae, with houses and 

yards, James Haig, 
House and yard, Haig & Clapperton, 
Dye house and yard, A. Henderson, 
House and yard, Thomas Haldane, 
Do. do, Robert Inglis, 



Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 


Do. 


do. 



Fields and House 




House and Yard, 


^ S. D. £ s. 


D. 


£ s. 


D. 


£ 


S. D. 


... 




15 


10 




7 8 


... 




4 


10 




38 


2 I 6 19 













... 




10 







5 8 






I 10 







5 8 


... 




^ 








I 


... 




2 3 





I 





... 




7 


6 






300 16 


4 










... 




I 5 







5 8 


... 




14 







5 10 


... ... 




I 4 







6 8 






3 3 







•5 8 


... 




5 







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8 







2 


... 




I 6 







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I 10 







12 8 


... 




8 







5 8 


... ... 




6 













14 







4 8 


500 3 10 













... 




I 







5 8 






I 4 







6 8 


... 




7 


6 






... 




7 







2 ID 


... 




I 4 







6 8 


... 




ID 







2 ID 


... 




I 5 







10 8 


... 




I 







5 8 


... 




■ 17 







5 8 


2 10 20 













... 




10 







2 10 


... 




7 







3 


... 




12 







2 10 


. , , . . , 




I 







6 8 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



79 



House and yard, James Inglis, 

Do. do. Widow and Alex. 
Kyles, 

House and yard, John Lees, ... 

Do. do. John Leitch, 

Do. do. William Lauder, 

Do. do. Thomas Laidlaw, 

Nether Waulkmill, Henderson, 
Young, and Thomson, 

Mid Waulkmill, Grieve, Cochran, 
Lees, and Gill, ... 

Upper Waulkmill, Robert & San- 
derson, 

Wilderhaugh Bum Mill, George 
Mercer, 

House and yard, William Mcintosh, 
Do. do. Francis Messer, 
Do. do. William Oliver, 

Thickland, Thomas Paterson, 

Wanlessmouth, Robert Paterson, 

Houses and yards. Do. do. 

Rouentree Butts, houses and yards, 
George Paterson, wauker. 

Big Stoney Quarter, Adam Pater- 
son, mason, 

2 houses and 2 yards, Adam Pat- 
erson, mason 

House and yard, G. Paterson, mole- 
catcher. 

Tannage, Adam Paterson, tanner, 

Weirhaiigh, barn and yard, Adam 
Paterson, tanner. 

House and yard, Adam Paterson, 
tanner. 

House and yard, Widow Pacoke, 
Do. do. Thomas Pringle, 
Do. do. John Robert, 

Poatloans, with houses and yards, 
George Richardson, 

2 houses, George Richardson, 

Upper Bogs, Do. do. 



Fields and House, 

^ S. D. £ S. D. 



O O 



2 10 



O O 



4 5 



7 4 



15 7 4 



13 3 6 
7 '3 ^ 



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£ %. x>. £ s. D. 

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I 5 
100 




7 10 
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I I 
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• 4 




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10 10 



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8o 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



Netherhaugh, croft and houses, 

George Rae, ... ... 6 o 

House and yard, George Rae, ... 
Midbars, with houses and yards, 

Hugh Sanderson, merchant, 3 5 
House and yard, John Small, ... 
Do. do. Thos. Sanderson, 
shoemaker. 
House and yard, Alex. Small, ... 
Do. do. Widow Sanderson, 
Do. do. Hugh Sanderson, 
couper, ... 
House, John and Wm. Sanderson, 
House and yard, Thomas Speiden, 
House, yard, and tenter stance, 

Hugh Sanderson, dyer, 
House and yard, Margt. Stodart, 
Do. do. James Stodart, 

Do. do. J. Sanderson, dyer. 

Do. do. Eliz. Sanderson, 

Do. do. John Simpson, 

Rountree Butts, with house and 

yard, William Thomson, ... 6 10 
House and yard, James Thomson, 
House, James Thorburn, 
A yard, Thorburn & Fairbairn, 
House and yard, Andrew Thomson, 
Do. do. George Tacket, 

Do. do. Waiter Tait, 

Do. do. John Tait, ... 

Mabonsbarr, with house and yard, 

William Walker, ... 40 

House and yard, Robert Walker, 

taylor, ... 
House and yard, Thomas Walker, 



Fields and House. 

£ S, D, £ S. D. 



House and Yard. 

£ s, u. £ s, D 



I II 10 



9 8 



6 4 



I 12 8 



Do. 


do. 


Jas. Walker, taylor, 


Do. 


do. 


Widow Williamson, 


Do. 


do. 


Alex. Wilson, 


Do. 


do. 


Thomas Wilson, 


Do. 


do. 


Thomas White, 


Do. 


do. 


Robert Youngs, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 8i 

Fields and House. House and Yard. 

;^ S. D. ;^ S. D. ;^ S. D. £ S. D, 

Bylands, with houses and yards, 

William Young, carrier, ... 14 o o 3 2 4 
House and yard, William Young, 

shoemaker, ... ... ... ... lo o 2 10 

Clothiers' Hall, Sundry Woollen 

Manufacturers, ... ... ... ... 10 6 

A dye house, Deacon of the weavers, ... ... a o 

The first record of a society formed for the purpose of 
affording assistance to its members in times of distress occurs 
1802 in 1802, designated **The Galashiels Friendly Society," 
and its official record furnishes some interesting information 
regarding the early condition of the town. The institution was 
inaugurated under the patronage of the leading men, and its 
object was ** to relieve members who might fall into temporary 
distress, with a reasonable prospect of being again able, through 
the blessing of God, to work for their bread." Distress included 
want of work as well as disease, and, as the original maximum 
of relief was three shillings per week, the ideas and manner of 
life at that period must have been of a much humbler character 
than those common to the present generation. 

The office-bearers were elected by ballot, their services 
being entirely gratuitous. The rules excluded every person 
labouring under hereditary disease, and, when an honorary 
member was admitted, they levied an entry money amounting 
to ten shillings, and **as much more as the new member chose 
to contribute." Every member had to sign the rules. The 
earlier portion of the list is an interesting memorial of the time. 

The first name is Robert Douglas, minister, Galashiels, the 
father, financier, and friend of his parishioners. At that date 
he was fifty-five years of age. The second name is one equally 
well-known, George Craig, writer, Galashiels, aged twenty; and 
the third is George Paterson, clothier, aged twenty-two. 

In the minutes, Galashiels is called **the village," and 
Langhaugh, Darling's Haugh, the Shingle, the Cauldback, 
Buckholmside, and Hemphaugh are appended to signatures; 
these places at that time not being included in Galashiels proper. 

F 



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82 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

When the society started, the number of members was fifty- 
four, which included all the men of light and leading in the 
village, besides farmers in the district. In 1806 it was ordained 
that any person would be excluded from participating in the 
benefit, 

*' If the distress or accident had been the result of intoxication, a quarrelsome 
temper, being habitually addicted to swearing, or profaning the Lord's day, 
as these practices were generally found to pave the way for all the vices by 
which men are reduced to stand in need of public aid. '' 

The society lent its money on bills to clothiers, 
merchants, and others, at five per cent, interest. Besides the 
borrower, these bills were sometimes endorsed by other four or 
five names, and ran occasionally for five or six years. The 
clerk at times had to notify to the borrower that the back of 
the bill was so covered with writing that it was necessary to 
renew the paper. Threats of legal action had often to be resorted 
to before a bill was retired, this duty being undertaken by 
William Haldane, clothier, whose services were remunerated 
with the munificent salary of half a guinea per annum, and who 
only received this sum because the society could not find any one 
willing to undertake the duties for nothing. 

The greatest number of members ever connected with the 
society amounted to 270, but in 1832 they had fallen to 200. 
The quarterly payment was one shilling, and the entry money 
varied from six shillings to twenty shillings, according to the age 
of the member, none being admitted under sixteen or over forty 
years of age. The relief afforded latterly amounted to five 
shillings per week for occasional, and two shillings per week for 
permanent, supply. 

In 1848 the number of members had dwindled to fifty, when 
the society was dissolved by mutual consent, the funds affording 
an equal dividend of ;^4, 13s. 

1803 ^^ 1803 the poet Wordsworth and his sister made a tour 

through Scotland, and Miss Wordsworth thus describes the 
appearance of the village at that period, — 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 83 

** Went through a part of the village of Galashiels, pleasantly situated on 
the bank of the stream. A pretty place it once has been, but a manufactory 
is established there, and a townish bustle and ugly stone houses are fast 
taking the place of the brown-roofed thatched cottages, of which a great 
number yet remain, partly over-shadowed by trees." 

In those days the villagers were very fond of theatrical per- 
formances, and, there being no suitable place for such purposes, 
they were under the necessity of occupying an unfinished flat 
above a stable .belonging to James Haig, the Kelso carrier. 
This temple of Thespis stood near the parish school, and the 
children called it ** Jamie Haig's hay loft." Access was obtained 
by means of a wooden trap stair, situated at the rear of the 
building. Here the stage was fitted up, the two front seats 
being styled the pit, admission one shilling; while the remainder 
of the seats was termed the gallery, to which the modest sum 
of sixpence secured an entrance. There, as opportunity offered, 
all the elite of the village and surrounding district were wont to 
assemble when a visit was paid by some strolling company of 
actors. On one occasion Mr George Craig was present, and 
amongst the occupants of the pit was a neighbouring farmer's 
wife. In the interval between the acts, Mr Craig asked her 
whether she preferred tragedy or comedy. With the utmost 
seriousness she replied ** I prefer comedy, for I think we have 
plenty of tragedy at home/* This reply Mr Craig communicated 
to some of his neighbours, which provoked a burst of merriment. 
Feeling indignant at this, the female observed to a friend, 
in a tone loud enough to be heard by a considerable portion of 
the audience, who had been indulging in mirth at her expense, 
**Does that lang dulse and tangle Lieutenant Craig think to 
make a fool of me and my tragedy?'' Mr Craig was tall and 
extremely thin, and the repartee proved too much for the 
audience; the laughter at Mr Craig's expense was general, till 
the rising of the curtain again attracted their attention to 
the stage. 



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F' 



CHAPTER XII. 

'OR some years the ambition of Napoleon Bonaparte had 
appeared to aim at universal dominion. Regarding 
Britain as the chief obstacle to his despotic sway, he 
directed all his energies toward preparations for an invasion of 
this country. He gathered together an immense army with the 
requisite means of transportation, and only waited a favourable 
opportunity to make a descent upon these shores. 

In such circumstances, the call to arms had resounded 
through the length and breadth of the land. Statesmen, poets, 
ministers of the Gospel, — all vied with each other in fanning the 
glow of patriotism which had taken possession of the people. 
Cities, towns, and obscure country villages alike had been 
training their sons to resist foreign aggression by force of arms. 
The modern facilities for the transmission of news were then 
unknown, but means were adopted to ensure a general rising 
when the moment for action arrived. Along the coast and upon 
the more prominent hill-tops sentinels were posted, who, by 
means of the beacon flare by night or the signal gun by day, 
could give speedy warning of the approach of the enemy. 

It was an anxious time, and at length the crisis arrived. 

1804 On the night of the 31st January, 1804, ^^e ruddy glow of the 

beacons lit up the midnight sky, as they flashed from hill-top to 

hill-top, giving warning with tongues of fire of the approach of 

the dreaded foe, — 

" Then there was mounting in hot haste." 

From every town and village, from bleak hill-side and lonely 
glen along the eastern side of the Borders, poured forth the 
hardy volunteers pressing onward to their appointed gathering- 
place. There were no laggards then. In the case of men 
absent on business, their wives and mothers sent their arms 

84 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 85 

and accoutrements to the rendezvous, lest theirs should be the 
last to join the ranks to repel the hated invader. 

Among the numerous local companies that had been 
enrolled all over the country the village of Galashiels was not 
behind, and the little band under Lieutenant Craig had been 
holding themselves in readiness to march at the appointed 
signal. Night after night anxious eyes scanned the horizon till 
at length a glare on the top of the Eildons gave warning far 
and wide that the enemy had been sighted. The clang of the 
alarm bell on the old Tolbooth soon broke on the startled ear of 
night, and the shrill fife and spirit-stirring drum sounded the 
call to arms, which was at once obeyed. 

The volunteers fell in at the Cross, where, as an eyewitness 
has left on record, by the light of a blazing fire, 

** Women were to be seen helping their men wi' their accoutrements, 
some rinnin' wi' ae thing an* some wi' anither, sabbin' an' greetin' a' the 
time, while the bairns were haudin' by their goun tails cryin' for their faithers 
no' to leave them." 

At length the command to march was given, and from amid 
the weeping crowd of wives, sweethearts, and children, the men 
stepped off into the darkness of the early winter morning. 

On reaching Middleton Inn, where a halt was made for 
rest and refreshment, they heard rumours that the alarm was 
false, and, on their arrival at Dalkeith, after a march of twenty- 
eight miles, the report was confirmed. After resting a few 
hours, their faces were turned homeward, and the following 
night they reached Galashiels. The news having preceded 
them, they were welcomed home amid general rejoicing, 
the village being illuminated in honour of the occasion. 

Some nameless local rhymer commemorated this episode in 
a series of verses, entitled ^*The Volunteers of Galashiels," 
which conclude thus, — 



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86 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

" But when they came unto Dalkeith their journey proved in vain, 
And by their captain's orders they were marched back again; 
They were all marched home again, and in a sweet surprise, 
They were kindly welcomed back by their sweethearts and their wives." 

Various reasons have been given for the occurrence; some 
have promulgated the idea that the authorities were desirous of 
testing the patriotism of the volunteers, while others, with 
perhaps more reason, attributed it to a sentinel having mistaken 
an accidental fire for a lighted beacon. 

In connection with this event in the history of the town, a 
little incident occurred. When the preparations for the march 
were completed, it was found that ** Susie HaV' the sergeant's 
wife, had taken up her position on one of the baggage carts. 
Lieutenant Craig remonstrated, but in vain; she firmly declined 
to budge, telling him that it would not be the first time that she 
had faced the French. Her husband, William Hall, had served 
against the French in the Irish rebellion, a few years previously, 
and ** Susie," then a girl of sixteen, attracted by a red coat, left 
her home and kindred to follow the drum. When the rebellion 
was suppressed her husband obtained his discharge from the 
army, and, accompanied by his young wife, returned to his 
native village, and settled down to his former occupation as a 
weaver. When the volunteers were enrolled he again offered 
his services, and being fully qualified by his previous training, 
was appointed sergeant-instructor to the local company. 

The uniform worn by the volunteers at that time consisted 
of a scarlet coat and white trousers, the cloth for the coats being 
made by Richard Lees, and the trousering by his brother John. 

The following was the muster roll of the company, — 

'* Lieutenant Craig, George Gray, Andrew Haig, John Lindsay, Sergeant 
William Hall, George Aimers, John Graham, John Sanderson, George Mirtle, 
Thomas Fairgrieve, John Forsyth, Robert Walker, Thomas Thomson, George 
Rae, David Thomson, William Gladstone, Adam Paterson, senr., J. Cairns, 
James Stirling, Robert Howden, Adam Paterson, junr., Alex. Kyle, James 
Piper, Thomas Mair, John Young, James Leithead, John Leithead, John 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 87 

Aimers, William Watson, William Swanston, John Bradely, Far. McDonald, 
Robert Gill, George Roberts, George Fairgrieve, Geo. Paterson, William Gill, 
J as. M'Kinley, Geo. Dobson, James Bathgate." 

A few of these names may now be sought for in vain, but 
the majority are still borne by the descendants of those men 
who, in the hour of danger, nobly testified their willingness to 
lay down their lives in defence of their hearths and homes, or 

** Stand a wall of fire around their much-loved isle." 



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CHAPTER XIIL 

IN 1804, ^ ^^^ consisting of Dr Douglas, George Craig, 
George Lothian of Kirklands, George Bruce, Langlee; and 
a retired Leith merchant, named Jamieson, who at that 
time occupied Gala House, erected a brewery on an extensive 
scale at Low Buckholmside, with the view of meeting the local 
demand for London porter, and at the same time providing work 
for a number of the villagers. In reference to the scheme, Mr 
Andrew Scott, the Bowden poet, thus expresses his good 
wishes, — 

'* Success I wish that noble plan, 
Maturing from its embryo state; 
In which a brewery we scan, 

By Gala's stream to take its seat. 

May peace with plenty still compete, 
Nor want nor dearth trip up our heels; 

Then quaffing many a bumper yet, 
We'll drink success to Galashiels.'* 

Every means was adopted to render the undertaking a 
success, and the services of an experienced London brewer were 
secured. However, he turned out to be both foolish and 
extravagant, so that the manufacture of ** London porter'' at 
Buckholmside proved a non-paying concern. While losing their 
money, the proprietors were at the same time losing faith in the 
speculation, and, finally, in 1809, they gave up the trade and 
sold the premises to Messrs Sanderson & Paterson, builders, 
who utilised them for the production of work of a better and more 
enduring character, of which, among other examples, the Parish 
Church and the original portion of Abbotsford remain to testify. 

In the early days of the town the bed of the Gala was much 
higher than it is now, and floods proved rather troublesome. 
1806 In 1806 it is recorded in the Kelso Mail that 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 69 

** The bridge over the Gala, rendered impassable by the severe storm in 
September last, is now in a situation that carriages of any description may 
pass over it with perfect safety." 

This bridge was the original Ladhope bridge. It was 
erected about 1764, and occupied a site a little further down 
the stream than the present- one. Two years later it is 
stated in the same publication that 

** The late heavy rains have been attended with very fatal effects in the 
vicinity of Galashiels. They caused torrents of water to descend from the 
surrounding mountains, which increased the Gala to such a degree as not only 
to sweep away Gala Bridge, but completely to destroy the public post road, in 
consequence of which the mode of communication in that part of the country 
is completely obstructed. 

We are sorry also to add that an extensive machinery for the manufacture 
of woollen cloth was entirely carried away by the torrent, which has thrown a 
number of industrious people out of employment." 

If this report was not intended as a hoax, the writer of the 
story must have been gifted with a remarkably fertile imagin- 
ation, such as could scarcely have been expected to exist in those 
primitive days. In modern times **our own reporter*' sometimes 
affords reason for wonder and amazement, but the following 
correction, which appeared in a subsequent issue, showed that 
the reporter of a century ago could, so far as imagination was 
concerned, compare favourably with his brethren in the craft at 
the present day, — 

"We are glad to learn from the following extract of a letter from 
Galashiels that the damage sustained from the late storm is not so extensive as 
we were led to believe. The bridge over Gala was not swept away, it only 
received some slight damage which will be repaired this week. A small part 
of the turnpike road was destroyed but is again repaired. None of the 
machinery houses were carried away, though the mill lead was choked with 
sand and gravel. A few manufacturers were thrown idle for a few days at 
most, and the bridge and road are in as good a state as they were before." 

1812 In 1812 a spirit of lawlessness and insubordination was 

prevalent in some parts of the country, and is thus referred to by 
Mr Walter Scott, sheriff of the county, in a letter to a friend, — 



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^ HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

''The infection has even reached the little thriving community of 
Galashiels, a flourishing village in my district. I was not long, however, in 
breaking up these associations and securing the papers. The principal rogue 
escaped me; in hearing that I was suddenly come into the place he observed, 
' It*s no' for nought the hawk whistles,' and so took to the hills and escaped." 

1 813 The following incident occurred in 181 3 in connection with 
the Sheriff. A lad, named George Kemp, had completed 
his apprenticeship as a joiner in a village in Peeblesshire, and 
having secured a situation in Galashiels set out for that 
place, carrying his tools on his shoulder. On reaching the old 
tower of Elibank, a carriage drove up, which was stopped at the 
request of a gentleman, who was the sole occupant. He 
inquired at the young lad how far he was going, and, on being 
told, he invited him to take his seat beside the driver, which he 
did gladly. On arriving at Galashiels he was set down, and 
learned from some of the bystanders that he had been riding 
beside the ^^Shirra." The young man wrought for some time 
in the town, spending his scanty leisure hours in visiting 
Melrose and Dryburgh Abbeys, and studying the architecture of 
these noble ruins. There he obtained the knowledge that 
enabled him in after-life to design that *^poem in stone" which 
proudly rears its head in the Scottish capital, commemorating 
the memory of the kind-hearted ** Shirra,*' Sir Walter Scott. 

1 8 14 In 1 8 14 the young Laird, John Scott of Gala, attained his 
majority, the event being thus described, — 

*' The village of Galashiels is at this time in a state of great animation, 
the woollen manufacture being uncommonly brisk, and a most rapid 
advancement has been made of late both in the quantity and quality of the 
goods. They meet a steady market and thereby ensure constant employment 
to old and young, who with smiling faces hail the long-wished-for return of 
peace and prosperity. 

To add to their joy the mansion-house is again lighted up by the heir of 
the illustrious house of Gala, who by the premature death of his brave father, 
Colonel Hugh Scott, in the service of his country, was left a minor, and in 
August last succeeded to his estate. On this joyful occasion a sumptuous 
dinner was given on the lawn in front of the house, to upwards of five 
hundred heads of families, his tenants, feuars, and others. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 91 

During Mr Scott's short residence in the place he has set about a number 
of improvements. The village is now embellished with an elegant, new, com- 
fortable and commodious parish church, and the foundation is laid at his own 
expense for a new bridge over the Gala in place of the old one, which has 
continued too long the terror of every passenger, and a disgrace to this line of 
road. These are but a few of the improvements projected and now carrying 
on, and, the village being exclusively Mr Scott's, his measures will tend in an 
eminent degree to promote the prosperity of the place." 

1815 Ini8i5 the famous game of handball at Carterhaugh was 

played. The idea was mooted at a dinner party at Bowhill, and, 
as originally arranged, the match was to take place between the 
Souters of Selkirk and the shepherds and others in Ettrick and 
Yarrow, 

Previous to the meeting, the most intense excitement pre- 
vailed, and soon the original scheme regarding the contending 
parties was considerably widened. From the neighbouring 
vales of the Tweed and Teviot numerous bands of men, adorned 
with sprigs of heather, the distinctive badge of the shepherds, 
were to be seen wending their way to Carterhaugh to take part 
in the contest. On the other side, about one hundred men 
from Hawick, besides contingents from Melrose and Galashiels 
turned out to the help of the Souters, who sported a fir twig in 
their bonnets as their emblem. 

It was a stirring sight when the multitude had assembled, 
the Duke of Buccleuch, the Earl of Home, and other county 
magnates being prominent. In their midst, and taking a deep 
interest in the proceedings, were three men whose names will 
live when men of merely high degree are forgotten. These were 
Walter Scott, James Hogg, and Henry Scott Riddell, a galaxy 
of poets which no other district of similar extent in Scotland 
could rival. 

When the arrangements were completed the ball was thrown 
up, and each side strove with might and main to carry it to their 
respective goals, which were denoted by two flags about a mile 
separate. The first game lasted but a short time. The shep- 
herds struggled hard for victory, but, although they were strong, 
stalwart men, they proved no match for their lighter and more 



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$2 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

agile opponents. After refreshments had been served, the second 
game was commenced, but on this occasion the relative strength 
of the parties had been changed. The men from Galashiels 
now assumed the heather, and took their place among the 
shepherds. Thus reinforced, they gained the second game, but 
under the changed conditions the Souters declined to continue 
the contest. However, they offered to play a final game with 
one hundred picked men on either side, but this offer produced 
no definite result. The short December day was now far 
advanced, and the combatants prepared to leave the field where 
a friendly match at handball had been converted into a cause of 
more strife and bitter enmity than anything that had occurred 
on the Borders for generations. 

The cause of the defection of the Galashiels men has never 
been correctly known, but it was the general belief that it was 
owing to the personal influence of Mr Walter Scott and Mr 
Pringle of Torwoodlee, who were both highly popular on 
account of the interest they took in the welfare of the village. 

In the evening, when Mr Scott was leaving Selkirk, his 
carriage was stopped in the Market Place by an angry crowd. 
His danger was great, but, with admirable tact, he paid no heed 
to the threatening language, but spoke to those nearest him in 
complimentary terms regarding the skill and dexterity they had 
displayed in the contest, finishing up by handing them a couple 
of guineas for refreshment. He was permitted to depart un- 
harmed, though the deed he was charged with rankled for years 
in the hearts of the Souters, descending even to their children, 
and was the cause of many a stout battle between the inhabitants 
of Galashiels and Selkirk. 

1816 In 1816 the famous wire bridge was erected over the Gala, 

where the Skinworks now stand, and was thus referred to, at the 
date of its erection, in the Kelso Mazly — 

** A wire bridge for foot passengers after the model of those constructed 
in America has just been erected across the Gala at Galashiels, and 
is found to answer the purpose exceedingly well and to every appearance 
may last for a number of years at little or no expense. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 93 

The span, which is 1 1 j feet, and the breadth 3 feet, makes it very neat and 
light in appearance, though with safety 20 or 30 people may be upon it at one 
time. The whole expense of the little bridge is only ;^2o (?) The public is very 
much indebted to the well-known spirit of Mr Lees for this useful introduction 
into the neighbourhood, to Messrs Bathgate, mill-wrights, and to Messrs 
Thomas Mercer and Joshua Wood in assisting in its construction, and it being 
so far as we know the first of the kind in the kingdom, they deserve the 
thanks of the public at large " 

In an article upon suspension bridges, which appeared in 
Chambers' Journal in 1839, this bridge is referred to in these 
terms, — 

'* The second suspension bridge finished in Britain was one over the river 
Gala, close by the town of Galashiels. The person who had the merit of pro- 
jecting this bridge, the first ever constructed in Scotland, was Mr Richard 
Lees, an extensive woollen cloth manufacturer, whose works were situated on 
both sides of the Gala, and who therefore conceived the idea of making a 
convenient communication between the different parts of his works. At an 
expense of ^^40 (?) he got a bridge formed in 1816, of slender iron wires, and 
one hundred and eleven feet in length. It was commonly and properly called 
a wire bridge, and was the first structure of that kind ever seen in Britain. 
Though very slight, as may be guessed from its petty cost, it has endured well 
the action of time, and is still passable and useful. It shakes or oscillates 
very considerably, but yet not so much as to be alarming, or even 
disagreeable." 

This bridge is also referred to in the Encyclopfedia 
Britannica. It served the purpose for which it was erected till 
1839, when it was destroyed by a flood. 

Shortly afterwards, another bridge on the suspension 
principle was erected a little farther down the stream, which also 
was swept away, in 1846. An amusing incident occurred in 
connection with this bridge. On one occasion a party of fishers 
were leistering salmon by torch light, and a number of villagers 
were congregated upon the bridge in order to witness the sport. 
At length the fishers passed under the bridge, when its occupants 
changed their position to the other side, and, the chain at that 
side proving too weak, it broke, and the spectators were capsized 
into the water. Not much damage was done. One old female, 



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94 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

named Bet Watson, who had been enjoying her smoke, was 
heard informing some sympathizers that ^*she didna care a 
bawbee for the tummel, if she hadna broken her *cuttie.' '' 

For some time after this bridge was carried away, the only 
means of communication between Buckholmside and Wilder- 
haugh was by stepping stones, or, when the water was 
flooded, by going round by the ^^Stane Brig/' Owing to the 
time for meals at that period extending only to three-quarters of 
an hour, this was found to be very inconvenient. Chiefly 
through the exertions of a weaver in Galabank Mill, named 
Thomas Hislop, a plank was acquired, which, in ordinary cases, 
served for crossing the stream. Through the course of time, 
however, this developed into a foot bridge, which, under 
the familiar name of ^^ Tam Hislop's Brig,'' did duty till the 
present iron structure, called Hunter's Bridge, was erected in 
1879 farther down the stream. 

While reference has already been made to a doctor having 
belonged to the town, it would appear that the profession had 
not been continuously represented. 

In 1 8 16 a petition was submitted to the heritors by 
Elizabeth Mercer, midwife, stating that she had attended in her 
professional capacity, a number of poor people in the parish, 
from whom she had received no payment for her services, and, in 
consequence of a surgeon having settled in the place, her business 
had entirely left her. In the circumstances, the heritors, without 
admitting any legal claim, gave her a donation of two 
guineas. This surgeon was probably Mr Traquair, who practised 
in the village in the early days of the present century. 
Previous to his advent, the medical profession had been repre- 
sented by Dr Graham, who resided on the west side of Elm 
Row. Amongst his successors were the Weirs (father 
and son), Campbell, Richardson, M^Dougall, and Hutton, 
whose names are still remembered by the older portion of the 
inhabitants of the town, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 95 

1820 In 1820 the marriage of John Scott of Gala to Miss 

Magfdalene Hope of Pinkie took place, and the approaching 
nuptials were celebrated by David Thomson, in the following 
stanzas, — 

**The spring returns, and Gala's banks 

Again doth shed their sweet perfume; 
And a' the creatures play their pranks, 

That lightly skip o*er dale and down. 
The little birds with warbling throat 

Shall sing their tuneful notes with glee, 
Till a' our care shall be forgot. 

Amid the wood's wild melody. 

Fair bloom the flowers by Gala's banks, 
By Torwoodlee and Buckholm Shaw; 

But there's a flower at Pinkie House, 
Transplanted, soon shall ding them a*. 

The spring returns and with it * Hope,' 

The dowie scenes nae mair we'll mourn; 
The clouds that lang did envelop, 

Are scattered never to return. 
May Gala and his bonnie bride ' 

Still find the sweets and joys o' spring, 
Till blooming shoots on every side, 

Like clustering grapes around them cling. 

Fair bloom the flowers by Gala's banks. 
By Torwoodlee and Buckholm Shaw; 
But there's a flower at Pinkie House, 
Transplanted, soon shall ding them a*. 

The marriage took place in due course, and again Mr 
Thomson has left a pleasant picture of the kindly rela- 
tions that existed between the Laird and the villagers. In this 
instance Mr Thomson writes in the character of a stranger and 
onlooker, — 

** I was much surprised in passing through Galashiels the other day to 
observe an unusual bustle amongst the inhabitants like the prelude to some 
serious commotion. In an instant almost the whole population of the villag^e 



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96 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

poured forth with drums beating, colours flying, &c., and marching in regular 
order to the bridge over Gala, where they took up their station. 

Anxious to know the meaning of all this, for the people were too cheerful 
and well-dressed to be mistaken for radicals, I asked at an old woman, the 
only onlooker besides myself, what was the matter. * Oh,' says she, *the 
Laird and the leddy's comin' hame the day, and the fouk are just come oot to 
gie them a welcome.' !§he had scarcely uttered the words when a coach and 
four was seen approaching at full speed, and in a short time it reached the 
head of the procession. This coach was at first taken for that of Lord 
Hermand on his way to the circuit court at Jedburgh, but a nearer view 
proved it contained more agreeable company. A gentleman and lady were 
the occupants, who, on being recognised, received such a hearty welcome as 
must have been most agreeable to their feelings. Much of the order of the 
procession was now lost in the anxiety of the people to get a sight of the Laird 
and his lady, who continued to show themselves, bowing to all present with 
the utmost affability. The coach was led slowly on, and on reaching Gala 
house the young gentleman handed in his bride and then mounted the dicky of 
the coach and thanked the people for their friendly attention, saying it was 
now for him to show his and Mrs Scott's respect for the honour they had done 
them. * To-morrow,' he said, *come all back to my wedding.' 

I returned home and that evening, from my residence, I could see beacons 
blazing on the neighbouring mountains, the four principal inns being filled 
with numerous guests, where, during the evening, many a bumper was drained 
to the health and happiness of thq newly-married couple. 

Being anxious to see the conclusion of the festival, I returned to the 
scene next day. I was recognised by Mr Craig, the factor on the estate of 
Gala, and was invited by him to join in the evening's entertainment, to which 
I willingly consented. 

The Manufacturers', and other corporations, under their respective 
banners, joined by the town's people, assembled at the Cross, and, in excellent 
order, began their march to Gala House. At the gate, they were met by Mr 
Scott and his lady, who, there, took up their position till the whole procession 
had passed, welcoming their guests with the utmost cheerfulness. On the 
lawn in front of the house, tables were spread, round which the company 
formed a circle, and the health of Mr Scott and lady were drunk with the 
utmost enthusiasm. Dancing now began, an exercise too much confined to 
dusty rooms. On the green the appearance of the various groups was most 
interesting. The festivities concluded with a supper and ball in the evening. 
At the supper, many appropriate toasts were given, only one I remember, and 
that was * May the example of the Lord of the Manor not be lost on the 
batchelors of the barony.' " 

Mr Thomson also produced the following verses in con- 
nection with the marriage, — 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 97 

'^ Come fie 1 let us a' to the weddin*, 

Our Laird's to be marriet the day; 
An' a' the haill toun is invitet 

To welcome his Lady sae gay. 
And there will be dancing and jigging, 

A fiddle frae Selkirk or twa, 
A drum and a fife to keep fluting. 

To cheer up our lasses sae braw. 

An' there will be baked meat an' roastit, 

An' puddings an' pies an' sic fare, 
An' shortbread — hoo sweetly we'll munch it; 

Then surely nae ane can want mair. 
Then hey for a toast ! are ye ready ? 

To Gala a son and an heir; 
Lang life to the Laird and the Leddy, 

Wi' plenty an' something to spare. 

Ye lasses that lang hae been slightet, 

Attend noo this night on his ca\ 
For noo is the time to get plightet, 

An' kissed and carried awa. 
Then fie ! let us a' to the weddin', 

The Laird's to be marriet the day; 
An' a' the haill toun is invitet, 

To welcome his Lady sae gay. " 



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CHAPTER XIV. 

IN the days before municipal government was established in 
the town, the Baron or Laird was represented by the 
Baron Bailie whom he appointed. This functionary, 
within the bounds of his jurisdiction, could enforce the payment 
of rents, and decide in disputes regarding money affairs up to a 
certain amount. In the event of the goods arrested being of 
less value than the sum sued for, he could sentence the debtor 
to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one month. For 
small offences he had power to impose a fine to the amount 
of twenty shillings, and, as an alternative, could sentence 
delinquents to be put in the stocks during the daytime for 
the space of three hours. 

In the regulations for the Galashiels grain and meal market, 

inaugurated in 1849, it was provided that, 

** In the event of any person or persons failing or refusing to pay to the 
Clerk of the Market the penalties or fines above imposed when incurred, within 
seven days from the date of a demand being made by him therefor by circular, 
such person or persons shall be cited on a complaint, at the instance of the 
Clerk for the time being, to appear before the Bailie of the barony of 
Galashiels to answer to the said complaint, and the said Bailie shall thereupon 
hear and determine the same." 

When George Craig succeeded Bailie Paterson in 18 13 
as factor on the estate of Gala, there were only eight or nine 
slated houses in the village, and a great many of the old 
thatched cottages of which it consisted were falling into a 
ruinous condition. 

About this time the Laird met with a serious accident by 
being thrown from his horse while hunting. For some time 
his life was despaired of, but he gradually recovered, and 
as soon as he was able to stand the fatigue of the journey, 
he and his family removed to the south of England, where 
they remained for a number of years. 

98 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 99 

During his absence Mr Craig was not idle. He diverted 
the road leading past the ** Round Tree," and opened up what was 
then called the/ ^ Swine/' or ^* Miller's, Park,*' upon which Scott's 
Place was built, its name being now changed to Bank Street, in 
all probability on account of the National Bank being opened 
there in 1825. The houses on the south side of High Street 
were built upon a site which was formerly a morass, called the 
** Padda Haugh." Bridge Street was erected in Darling's 
Haugh, where previously crops of grain were grown. This street 
is said to have been planned by Mr Craig, and has a peculiarity 
nowhere observable in any other part of the town. With 
the exception of the break at Johnstone's Close, the roofs are 
continuous, the closes or passages which give admission to 
the rear of the houses being covered by the second floor, thus 
making the upper flat about six feet longer than the lower one. 
Originally the right to build was confined to the ground on the 
south side of the street only, but through the efforts made in 1883 
by the congregation belonging to Ladhope Free Church to secure 
a site for their new building, the restriction was removed, and 
the Superior granted a deed which conferred the right to build 
upon what formerly had been garden ground. Island Street 
was next erected upon the Weir-haugh, and Elm Row replaced 
a row of thatched cottages, called the **Wynd," upon the 
site of which the Parish Church is now built. Green 
Street was erected in a small field called ** Cuddy Green," 
into which the wandering tinkers and others had the privilege of 
putting their donkeys for the night. Under the management 
of Mr Craig the village had become a budding town, and 
Henry Sanderson, manufacturer, the author of The Unpub- 
lished Annals of the Parish^ celebrated his praise in a few com- 
plimentary verses, concluding thus, — 



** Through thee on wilds of other years, 
A happy village spreads around; 
And Gala's classic bank now wears 
The fabled face of fairy ground/* 



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loo HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Commenting on Mr Craig's work, the same authority 
states, — 

*• Without Mr Craig and Dr Douglas, Galashiels, at the present time, 
would be no better than the villages of Lauder or Earlston, Bowden 
or Darnick." 

1 82 1 At one time the only method of transporting goods between 

Galashiels and Edinburgh, or elsewhere, was by means of horses 
and carts. Previous to 1821, a tram road had been laid down 
between Edinburgh and Dalkeith. At that date the route 
between Dalkeith and St Boswells was surveyed for a similar 
line by Robert Stevenson, engineer, Edinburgh, on behalf of 
the landed proprietors and others throughout the district, whose 
interests were likely to be affected. These included the Duke 
of Roxburgh, the Marquis of Lothian, the Earl of Minto, the Hon. 
W. J. Napier, Sir Walter Scott, James Pringle of Torwoodlee, 
John Scott of Gala, etc. The proposed line was to be worked by 
horse power, the route being similar to that covered by the existing 
railway. According to the engineer's report, Middleton Moss 
was to be crossed by a chain bridge 500 feet long, and a like 
bridge was to span the Tweed at Galafoot. The value of the 
land required for a depot in Galashiels, at that time, was com- 
puted at ;^5o per acre. It was estimated that the line 
would cost ;^63,63i, and, after expenses were paid, it was 
expected that the profit would yield a dividend of seven and a 
half per cent. The estimate of the amount of revenue was 
principally based on the carriage of coal and lime. It was 
calculated that Galashiels would consume annually 3,000 
tons of coal, which would require to be conveyed twenty- 
four miles at twopence per ton per mile, also 1,000 tons of 
lime to be carried twenty-three miles at the same rate. The 
aniount of imports, consisting of timber, iron, oak bark, 
grocery and other goods, was calculated at 2,000 tons, no 
allowance being made for goods exported. The tramway 
was intended for goods and mineral traffic only, but the report 
stated that, ''were the railway established, there can be little 



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HISTORY or GALASHIELS. lot 

doubt but vehicles might be constructed for the transit of 
passengers, although we would not calculate upon much revenue 
from that source/' From some unexplained cause the scheme 
was abandoned, although subscriptions had been obtained to 
nearly the required amount. 

The following figures will serve to show the difference 
between the estimated traffic of 6,000 tons in 1821, and the 
reality at the present date, — 

Minerals and goods imported into Galashiels in 1896, Tons, 1 14,078 

Goods exported fiom Galashiels in 1896, ... do. 18,766 

Number of parcels forwarded by passenger train, ... 43»64i 

Do. do. received do. do. ... 47,062 

Number of passengers booked at Galashiels Station, 263,792 
The number arriving is not tabulated. 

In the early days of the town, men and women worked 
harder, while their opportunities for amusement were fewer 
and farther between than at the present day. Ignorant 
to a large extent of what went on in the great world around 
them, they found pleasure in objects and pursuits that 
would now be thought puerile. Amongst other sources of 
relaxation and enjoyment, the local fairs played no inconsider- 
able part; they were looked forward to with the keenest antici- 
pation, and furnished matter for gossip long after the event. 
Especially was this the case with Selkirk and Melrose fairs, to 
which a large contingent of young people of both- sexes used to 
flock for an afternoon and evening's pleasure. 

On one of these occasions two young men named Brown, 
belonging to Galashiels, set out to attend a Selkirk fair. 
While enjoying themselves in the customary manner, they 
succeeded in cultivating the acquaintance of a couple of 
*^weel-faured" lasses, whom, after treating to the usual 
**fairinV' they had the felicity of escorting home to Galashiels, 
both being servants in the Bridge Inn. Having been rather 
smitten by the charms of their respective partners, they shortly 
afterwards paid a visit to the Bridge Inn for the purpose of 



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102 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

renewing their acquaintanceship. In this they were successful, 
and, as there was no particular hour for closing in those days, 
their charmers held them in sweet converse till the small hours 
of the following morning. At length they took their departure, 
and, whether due to the effects of love, liquor, or both combined, 
they had no sooner reached the street than they commenced 
to give vent to the exuberance of their feelings by perpetrating 
as much mischief as they could conveniently overtake on 
their way homeward. After overturning all the water barrels 
they could lay hands upon, and changing the wheels 
of several carts, they started to awaken all and sundry 
within their reach. This, however, did not continue long; the 
irritated villagers soon put a stop to their performance by 
sallying out and capturing them. They were at once identified, 
and some indignant victim lodged a complaint with the county 
Fiscal. Investigation was made, and that official came to 
the conclusion that the affair was more the result of a frolic than 
from any malicious design. He quietly advised the culprits to 
wait upon the Sheriff at Abbotsford, to whom the papers relating 
to the case would be sent. Acting on his advice, and fortified 
with testimonials of character from their employer, ** Baron 
Brown," they proceeded to Abbotsford in much fear and 
trembling. Arriving there, they were ushered into the study, 
where they found the Sheriff. Extenuating nothing, they made 
a clean breast of the whole affair. Sir Walter told them they 
could not be allowed to disturb the quiet people of Galashiels in 
such a manner, and, after a few questions, he asked the amount 
of their wages. Being satisfied upon this point, he proceeded to 
inform them that he considered it a great affront to young people 
like them to be committed to jail, and, in the circumstances, 
would prefer to impose a fine. "Would it distress you to pay 
half a guinea each? '* was his next question, and this they thank- 
fully agreed to do. Handing the money to the butler on 
retiring, they made their way home, poorer but wiser men, and 
in a day or two afterwards received the following acknowledg- 
ment, which is still to be seen at Selkirk, carefully preserved by 
a son of John Brown, — 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 103 

George and John Brown» 

You have paid into my hands one guinea, being the amount of a 
fine imposed on you by my sentence of this date for disorderly proceedings 
at Galashiels on the night of the eighth current, of which fine you are hereby 
discharged, and I will remit the same to the proper quarter. 
Recommending you to be more circumspect in future, 

I am, &c., 
Abbotsford, loth Aprils 1824. Walter Scott. 

1825 In 1825 the population of the village was 1600, and their 

spiritual necessities were attended to by the ministers, pastors, 
and elders of the Established, Baptist, Glassite, and Secession 
Churches. At the same date the following inns were 
in existence, — The Hall, Commercial, Bridge, and Fleece, 
besides six public-houses and ten spirit shops, being one to every 
eighty of the population. There was neither jail nor policeman. 
Mr Craig, the Baron Bailie, was the only individual who dis- 
pensed justice. All the traffic to and from Edinburgh was over- 
taken by Messrs Young and Richardson, while one carrier each 
sufficed for Hawick and Kelso. There were ten shoemakers, 
seven tailors, six butchers, and of blacksmiths and bakers there 
were five each. There were also four carpenters, three mill- 
wrights, three skinners, two saddlers, two plasterers, one watch- 
maker, one nailer, one glazier, and one who dealt in earthenware. 
There were two firms of builders, two fire and life assurance 
agents, two surgeons, and two banks. For those desirous of 
travelling either to Edinburgh or Jedburgh opportunity was 
affiDrded by the ** Chevy Chase'' and ^^Blucher'' coaches, which 
started at 10 a.m. for Edinburgh, and at 1.30 p.m. for Jedburgh. 

At the present day it would be rather startling to hear of 
1827 highway robbery being committed in the district, but in 1827 it 
would appear as if law and order had not been observed to the 
same extent as it is now, when such an occurrence is unknown. 

While passing through Buckholm Wood, a Galashiels man, 
named Robert Aimers, was attacked and robbed at that date. 
Two w^eeks later another attempt was made upon a Mr Ingram, 
who resided in the locality. He had been visiting at a 



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I04 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

farm near Stow, and was supplied with a horse for the return 
journey, a servant accompanying him to take back the 
animal. In passing through the same wood, his bridle was 
seized by two men, who demanded his money. Knowing that 
the servant was only a short distance behind, Mr Ingram coni- 
menced to remonstrate with the robbers, and used every means 
to cause delay. In this he was successful, for, upon the servant 
making his appearance, they at once decamped. On the follow- 
ing Saturday night, Robert Howden was attacked and rendered 
senseless, the robbers relieving him of all he had in his pockets. 
When he became conscious the thieves had disappeared, and he 
made his way home as speedily as possible, and reported the 
outrage. Mr Craig caused the drum to be beaten to arouse the 
villagers, and in a short time a party of men set out to scour 
Buckholm Wood with the view of securing the robbers, but 
owing to the darkness they were obliged to return unsuccessful. 

1828 About the year 1828 great excitement prevailed in conse- 

quence of the graveyards, especially in country districts, being 
rifled to secure bodies for anatomical schools in Edinburgh 
and elsewhere. The columns of the local press of that 
date teem with instances in which the ^* resurrectionists,'* as 
they were termed, had either been successful or had been 
scared in the attempt. The authorities appeared to be unable 
to suppress these outrages, and the feelings of the relatives 
were lacerated in many cases with the knowledge that 
the bodies of their loved ones had been carried off for dis- 
section. This reign of terror at length culminated in the 
notorious case of Burke and Hare, who, assisted by Hare's 
wife, murdered several people in Edinburgh, whom, on various 
pretexts, they had enticed into their dwelling, for the sake of the 
price they received for the bodies. 

In order to protect the graves in the old churchyard from 
being desecrated, the villagers organised themselves, and, when 
necessary, armed patrols kept nightly watch over the remains of 
the silent dead. It is said that the ancient burial place at Lindean 
proved a happy hunting ground for these body snatchers, owing 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 105 

to its lonely and isolated position. Arrangements were at length 
made by the authorities whereby subjects could be acquired in 
sufficient number, which put a stop to the scandalous method 
that had been formerly pursued. 

Floods in the Gala caused considerable trouble in the 
town's early days, and on some occasions boats had to be 
brought from Boldside to rescue inhabitants who had been 
surrounded by the torrent. One of these inundations occurred 

1829 in 1829, which, but for the extraordinary efforts put forth, might 
have carried away the lower part of the town. With a view to 
stem the destructive power of the torrent, fir trees were cut 
down and dragged by horses to the edge of the stream, and were 
thrown in at such places as were most exposed. They were 
securely fastened, and comparative calm was produced behind 
the barrier, the thick branches so breaking and resisting the 
force of the current as to render it powerless to cause further 
damage. 

1830 In 1830 there were only two houses on the north side of the 
Gala, in Darling's haugh, and the road to Melrose crossed the 
stream at Langhaugh ford, foot passengers finding their way 
across on stepping stones when the water was low. Before 
1833 a wooden bridge was erected, designed by William 
Kemp, and was of a somewhat novel construction. This bridge 
stood till about. 1841, when it was replaced by a stone one, 
built by Adam Stirling, builder. In 1846 it was rendered 
insecure by a flood, and stood in this condition for the next 
two years, when it was repaired by the contractors for the rail- 
way. In 1866 it was found to be too narrow and inconvenient 
for the increasing traffic. It was demolished, and, owing 
largely to the exertions of John Thorburn, auctioneer, the 
present bridge was erected. 



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CHAPTER XV. 

ORIGINALLY the town was built upon a long narrow strip 
of ground, nearly all on the south side of Gala. Be- 
fore entering the village, the traveller from Edinburgh 
had to pass Richardson's Corn Mill, standing on the narrow 
haugh between the steep bank and the water. Pursuing his way, 
he approached High Buckholmside, which then formed part of 
a separate village. At the foot of the gardens which sloped 
down from the road stood Comelybank, in a pleasant situation 
overlooking the Gala. At its lower end lay the garden which 
belonged to Richard Lees, with its noted summer-house 
overhanging the calm, clear, cauld pool, its mirrored ceiling 
reflecting the speckled trouts as they leisurely swam to 
and fro. Passing onward, Ladhope Inn is reached, the 
halting place of the once well-known coach the *^Blucher.'* 
The road now trends downwards, having on the left Ladhope 
plantations, and low down on the right stand the Brewery, 
Blaikie's skin works, Sanderson & Paterson's woodyard, and 
Buckholmside Mill. Straight in front lay the pastoral stretch 
of green sward, where, according to tradition, Cromwell and his 
Ironsides had bivouacked. Crossing the Gala by the ^*Stane 
Brig,'* and turning round Nannie Knox's corner, the **Auld 
Street'* is entered, where ^^ Willie a' things,'* Oliver, the baker; 
Dickson, shoemaker; Walker, tailor; Dr Weir, and other well- 
known names were to be found. Arriving at the foot of the 
street, the Waulkmillhead Mill comes into view, where, against 
the dyke, lay the old wooden axle of the mill wheel. Here 
the village worthies, with their aprons round their waists, used 
to congregate when the toils of the day were over, to smoke 
their pipes and discuss *^Yirl Grey's" famous Reform Bill. 
Here the Fair used to be held, to which the ^^ sweetie wives" 
came with their ^^krames," and the ^^ Selkirk bodies" with their 

io6 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 107 

snaps and gingerbread. Passing down ** Brodie's Raw," or the 
*^Cowgate/' now termed Overhaugh Street, the Subscription 
School appears standing in the centre of an open square. Sur- 
rounding it were the workshops of Mitchell, the smith; and Jamie 
Leitch, the cooper; **Willie Wud's** skinwork, and the stove-house, 
where, in the absence of *Mrouth,'' the manufacturers of that 
period dried their cloth. At this time an open burn flowed from 
the mill lade along a part of the east side of the square 
and was joined by another streamlet from the ^* Padda Haugh'' 
which ran down the back of the High Street and **Chingle," where 
'*Auld Whirliegig'* kept the beggar's opera. Turning south- 
ward along Sharp Street, the Corn Mill stood in front, to 
the left the Damside, and to the right Scott's Place, where, 
amongst others, dwelt Haldane, the banker; Jamie Hutton^ 
joiner; Jamie Riddell, tailor; and Simon Dobson, shoemaker. 
At the top of the Lawyer's Brae stood Thorburn's Inn, and after 
passing the Cross and Mr Henderson's Meeting-house, the road 
turned to the right, passed Jenny Sharpe's Moss, and on to 
Selkirk. 

At this period the present road to Selkirk did not exist 
The Tweed had either to be crossed by the bridge at Yair, forded 
at ** Needle Ha'" ford, or ferried at Boldside. The incon- 
venience of this road had been much felt, and the following 
petition was presented, — 

'* Unto the Honourable the Trustees for the Public Roads of the County 
of Selkirk, the Petition of the Inhabitants of Galashiels 

Humbly sheweth that while they acknowledge with 
gratitude the general improvement of the ro.ads of the county, yet one impedi- 
ment still remains to the great inconvenience of the public, that is the want of 
bridges over Tweed and Ettrick. These would connect the county, shorten 
the distance and unite at Galashiels with the unrivalled line of road that has 
brought such blessings on this town and neighbourhood. 

It is unnecessary for your Petitioners to dwell on the many advantages 
that would follow this alteration, they would only beg in a more particular 
manner that you would take into your early and earnest consideration this 
great public measure which is so much required for the general accommoda- 
tion of the county." 



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108 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Whether this petition had any effect cannot now be deter- 
mined, but the foundation stone of the bridge over Tweed was 
jg^j laid by Sir Walter Scott in 1831, while, on the same day, 
Charles B. Scott of Woll performed a similar ceremony at the 
bridge which spans the Ettrick at Lindean. 

Hitherto no record is to be found of any interest having 
been taken in Parliamentary elections by the inhabitants of the 
town. In 1 83 1 a serious incident occurred at the election of 
a delegate to represent Lauder Town Council in an impending 
county election, in regard to which the members were equally 
divided. In these circumstances the difficulty was solved by 
three young men belonging to Galashiels, whose names were 
Alexander Clapperton, John Henderson, and Thomas Turnbull. 
On the election day, along with a number of others, the three 
worthies made their way to Lauder, and took forcible possession 
of a carriage containing Charles Simson of Threepwood, 
a supporter of the Tory candidate. The services of the driver 
being summarily dispensed with, one of the trio mounted the 
box and drove off, the other two seated themselves in the 
interior, where they forcibly detained Mr Simson. As the deed 
had been done openly, it was not long till they were pursued by 
a party of horsemen, who, after scouring the country, ultimately 
succeeded in effecting their capture in the neighbourhood of 
Birkenside, between Earlston and Lauder. 

The culprits were taken before Colonel Shillinglaw, J. P., 
when their names were ascertained, and, at Mr Simson*s 
request, they were set at liberty, as he stated they had treated him 
kindly, though he had been prevented from voting. The matter, 
however, was of too criminal a character to be allowed to drop, 
and, by the instructions of the Lord Advocate, the three men 
were apprehended and lodged in Greenlaw Jail. 

When their arrest was made, it created great excitement 
in the town, and, when it became known that the prisoners were 
to be transferred to Jedburgh upon a certain date, it was resolved 
by a few hot-heads to intercept the conveyance and liberate 
them. Accordingly, on the appointed day, about seventy men 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 109 

belonging to the town, armed with sticks, started for Leader- 
foot, for the purpose of effecting a rescue. On arriving 
there, however, they learned to their chagrin that they were too 
late, the police and their prisoners had already passed. When 
this became known, about half of the party returned home, 
while the remainder pushed on for Jedburgh. On their arrival, 
they made a fruitless effort to obtain aid for the purpose of 
attacking the jail. They found that they had miscalculated the 
spirit that animated the people, as they could not obtain 
one single person to countenance their lawless proceeding. 
On the contrary, when their intention became known, a number 
of the townsmen offered their services to the authorities in the 
event of an attack being made. In these circumstances, and 
probably having come to the conclusion that discretion was the 
better part of valour, the men turned their faces homeward. 
It happened that the Sheriff-substitutes of the counties of 
Roxburgh and Selkirk, with their respective Fiscals, were at 
St Boswdlls that day, and considerable apprehensions were 
entertained for their safety, but no attempt was made to molest 
them. 

In consequence of the Baron Bailie's man, Robert Howden, 
being concerned in the apprehension of the prisoners, public 
feeling ran high against him. This culminated in a mob march- 
ing to his house in Sharp Street (now Market Street), and, as he 
declined their invitation to come out and be 'Mook'd'' in the mill 
dam, which then ran open past the end of the street, they broke 
his window with stones, while one of the party lifted the *'clog*' 
which lay at the side of the door, and, dashing it against the 
framework, carried the whole window into the middle of the floor. 
Things began to look serious, but Rob's blood was up, and he 
determined to defend himself to the bitter end. For this purpose 
he presented to the unruly crowd the business end of *' Brown 
Bess/' as he styled his old gun. This proved sufficient, the rioters 
fled like rabbits, and turning their attention to Stephen Metcalf, 
wrecked his dwelling, which was situated in the Damsidp, 



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no HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

because he sometimes acted as an assistant to Howden when 
his services were required. 

In the meantime the prisoners were liberated, bail being 
fixed at ;^6o each. The cautioners for Clapperton were 
Robert Weir, surgeon; George Simpson, teacher; and William 
Gill, manufacturer. Those for Henderson were James Sime, 
jun., manufacturer; Robert Oliver, inn-keeper; and John Hislop, 
ironmonger; while those for Turnbull were Robert Turnbull, 
bank clerk; Thomas Aitchison, merchant; and Archibald Elliot, 
joiner. Previous to the trial the culprits absconded, and when 
the case was called in the High Court of Justiciary at Edinburgh, 
on the 2ist November, 1831, they failed to appear, and the 
Solicitor-General moved for fugitation and forfeiture of the bail 
bonds. Objection was taken to the forfeiture by the cautioners on 
the ground that the time of their liability had expired on the i8th 
of the month, while the trial did not take place until three 
days after. This objection was sustained by the Court, and, while 
the culprits were outlawed, their cautioners saved their money. 

None of the fugitives ever came back to reside in the town, 
though, as the sequel proved, it was perhaps the best day's work 
they ever did, as they succeeded in obtaining positions in London 
and elsewhere much superior to what they probably would have 
attained in Galashiels. Years afterwards, at considerable 
expense, the outlawry was removed through the exertion of the 
once well-known Joseph Hume, Member of Parliament for 
Montrose. 



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CHAPTER XVI. 

IT would appear that in 1831 the constabulary of the county 
of Selkirk were not considered sufficient for the proper 
discharge of the duties they might be called upon to perform, 
and the expedient of supplementing them by a number of special 
constables was adopted. 

Accordingly, on the 14th June, 1831, the Justices granted 
commission to James Pringle of Torwoodlee, to cause the 
following persons belonging to Galashiels to be sworn in as 
special constables in the county of Selkirk, — George Paterson, 
clothier; James Brown, clothier; James Walker, weaver; Robert 
Walker, clothier; Henry Brown, clothier; George Dun, residenter; 
Robert Gill, sen., clothier; Robert Sanderson, clothier; George 
Anderson, Netherbarns; George Roberts, clothier; James Bath- 
gate, clothier; George Ballantyne, Mossilee; J. Fairgrieve, 
clothier; Thomas M^Gill, clothier; Thomas Nicol, flesher; Archi- 
bald Elliot, joiner; James Roxburgh, flesher; Robert Haldane, 
writer; William Paterson, tanner; Robert Rankin, labourer; 
William Young, carter. With the exception of James Walker, 
Robert Gill, James Brown, and Robert Haldane, who from various 
causes were unable to attend, the remainder were sworn in as 
special constables, the following being the oath used on the 
occasion, — 

**I do swear that I shall faithfully and truly discharge the office of 
constabulary within the county of Selkirk during the time appointed to me, 
and shall not for favour, respect, or fear of any man, forbear to do what 
becometh me in the said office. And above all things, I shall regard the 
keeping and preserving the King's Majesty's peace, and shall at every Quarter 
Session and meeting of Justices give true and due information of any breach 
which hath been made of His Majesty's peace within the bounds of my 
commandment, and shall in no way hide, cover, nor conceal the same, nor any 
of the proofs or evidences which I can give for the clearing and proving 
thereof. — So help me God." 

Ill 



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112 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

This organisation existed till 1867, and, during the years 
of their office, the county treated the force to an annual 
dinner in recognition of their services. The increased efficiency 
of the police rendered the special constables unnecessary, 
and application was made to the SheriflF to discharge the 
body. This, however, was not within his power, owing to 
the force being originally organised by the SheriflF and Justices 
of the Peace, therefore the individual members resigned, 
and, after being in existence for thirty-six years, they ceased 
to act. 

Notwithstanding the services of so many good men and 
true, it would appear as if they were sometimes in the position 
ascribed to the modern policeman, viz., not at hand when 
wanted. 

1832 In 1832 the contest was fought between Pringle of Clifton 

and Pringle of Yair, for the representation of the county of 
Selkirk. On that occasion Pringle of Clifton, the Whig candi- 
date, entertained his friends and supporters in the Bridge Inn, 
and, as was customary in those days, the liquor was not strictly 
confined to the guests. This liberality on the part of the 
candidate resulted in a number of the reformers, as they styled 
themselves, drinking more than was good for them, and showing 
a disposition to riot. At this juncture, a carriage containing 
Thomas Bruce of Langlee and his wife, on their way homeward 
from a dinner party at Gala House, came through the town. 
The fact of Mr Bruce being a Tory formed an excellent excuse 
for making an attack upon him. Mrs Bruce narrowly escaped 
being struck on the head by a large stone thrown through the 
carriage window. Before the reformers had testified their utter 
abhorrence of Tory principles they had smashed the carriage to 
fragments. Other two carriages now came upon the scene, 
containing James Pringle of Torwoodlee and Archibald Gibson 
of Ladhope, who, also on account of their political principles, 
were abused, but not to such an extent. 

On the following day, when the outrage became known, a 
considerable number of the inhabitants met and subscribed a 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 113 

sum of money for the purpose of offering a reward for the 
conviction of the rioters, and the following advertisement was 
issued, — 

"Reward of Sixty Pounds. 
''Whereas upon the evening of Thursday, i6th August last, between the 
hours of nine and ten, Thomas Bruce of Langtee, James Pringle of Torwood- 
lee, and Archibald Gibson of Ladhope were assaulted by a mob of persons 
with stones and other missiles, the above reward is offered to any one who 
will provide such information as will lead to the conviction of the offenders." 

This amount was made up by a contribution of £y^ from 
the inhabitants, ;^io from John Scott of Gala, and ;^20 from the 
county authorities. Despite the fact that a considerable number 
of the perpetrators of this outrage were perfectly well known, 
the police were unable to bring the offenders to justice. 

Notwithstanding the excitement caused throughout the 
country by the passing of the Reform Bill, the doings of the 
inhabitants of Galashiels on that occasion are not recorded. 
The only reference yet met with is contained in an old cash book 
which belonged to the Weavers* Corporation, in which an entry 
is made to the following effect,^— ^* July 3rd, Expenses for the 
flag, and for the Reform procession, 6s.'' 

In 1832 a large coal depot was established in the town, 
which was intended to equalise the price of coal all the year 
round, and to supply the poor with small quantities at the 
ordinary rate, in place of being charged twenty-five per cent, 
higher, as had hitherto been the case. The coal was brought 
from Midlothian in carts, a load varying from twenty-five 
to thirty cwt., which sold at prices ranging from gd to is 
per cwt. 
1833 In 1833 the necessity for a regular supply of coal began to 

be felt, as at that date the Galashiels Gas Company came into 
existence. This concern originated at a meeting held on 
the 29th September, George Craig in the chair. In open- 
ing the proceedings, the Chairman stated the object of the 
meeting, and pointed out various reasons why it would be 



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114 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

advantageous to have a Gas Company. Robert Gill moved 
*^ That the town be lighted with gas, and that a company should 
be formed for the purpose.*' This was seconded by Robert Fyshe, 
schoolmaster, and unanimously carried. George Paterson 
then proposed ^^That the funds necessary for the purpose be 
raised by subscription in shares of £$ each." This was 
seconded by George Roberts, junr., and approved of. Mr 
Fyshe then proposed '*That a committee be formed for the 
purpose of giving effect to the foregoing resolutions.'* This 
was done, and the necessary steps were at once taken to 
raise the capital for carrying out the scheme. Among the 
original shareholders were Robert Pringle of Clifton, M.P.; 
John Stewart, merchant, Edinburgh; John Baird, Shott's Iron- 
works; Samuel Aitken, Edinburgh, — twenty shares each; 
Robert Haldane, Gill, Sime & Co.; Sanderson & Paterson, 
R. & A. Sanderson, Roberts & Paterson, R. & G. Lees, 
G. Main, Kelso; The Hon. Captain Elliot, — ten shares each; 
Robert Fyshe, George Craig, William Thomson, John 
Haldane, John Clapperton, W. Roberts, junr.; John Aimers, 
J. & W. Cochrane, Alexander Brodie, John Anderson, Selkirk; 
Nicol Milne, Faldonside; George Anderson, Netherbarns — five 
shares each; and the remainder of the capital, which amounted 
to jCiySOy was subscribed in sums varying from jCs to ;^20. 

Not only was a regular supply of coal required for the 
manufacture of gas, but steam had already begun to be used 
as a motive power. This originally was on a small scale, 
and consisted of an engine of three horse-power, used for grinding 
bark in the tannery; one of two horse-power, used in the 
Brewery ; and one each of one horse-power, used by Thomas 
Anderson, millwright, and John Hislop, blacksmith. 

Previous to 1830, a change in the public taste had taken 
place regarding the style of cloth produced in the town. A 
crisis in the trade was the cause of a considerable amount of 
idleness and consequent distress, which prevailed for a lengthened 
period. So much was this felt, that many of the town's people 
were reduced to the necessity of purchasing the bread and me^l 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 115 

sold by the beggars to Johnny Stewaft, who kept a public 
lodging-house in the **pend'* in Sharp Street, and which, under 
ordinary conditions, were used for feeding pigs. 

In these circumstances, in order to raise funds to assist in 
relieving the prevailing distress, charity balls were organised. 
In addition to the balance which was expected to remain after 
the expenses were paid, donations towards the same object were 
received from landed proprietors and others in the neighbour- 
hood. The first of these gatherings took place in the Bridge Inn 
assembly room, the managers for the occasion being Robert 
Gill, junr., Galashiels; Robert G. Thomson, Melrose; and 
Henry Hume, Selkirk. The company numbered fifty-four 
gentlemen and twenty ladies, belonging to Galashiels, Selkirk, 
Hawick, Peebles, Stow, and Melrose. There were also repre- 
sentatives from Smailholm, Belses, Dalkeith, and Edinburgh. 
The following extract from the cash book shows the income 
and expenditure, — 

An Account of the Money Received at the Ball. 

;;^ s. D. j^ s. D. 

54 gentlemen's tickets at 6s, ... ... ... 15180 

20 ladies' tickets at 3s, ... ... ... 300 

Donations, ... ... ... ... 9 13 o 

Paid Murray's bill, viz., 
4 bottles whisky toddy at 3s 8d, ... ... 14 8 

3 dozen beer at 3s, ... ... ... ... 9 o 

Wine for the ladies, 18/; Keep of the carriage horses, 8/, 160 
Fiddlers' bill, 15/11; coachman's bill, 4/8, ... 107 

Rent of the ball-room, ... ... ... i i o 

Allowance for servants, 7/; door-keeper, 2/, ... 90 

Paid Mr Fair's account, ... J^o 14 8 

Off received for the playing cards, 4 6 

10 2 

Gideon Brown for beef, J^x^ 1/6; Mr Milne for bread, 9/, i 10 6 
Mrs Matthew for candles and mustard, ... ^3 10 

J. Wright, Hawick, musician, ;£'3, 15/; coachman, 5/, 400 
Coach hire to Mr Mitchell, Selkirk, 14/6; wine carriage, i /, 15 6 



Expenses, 12 10 3 

Balance, 16 o 9 



;;^28 I I O ;^28 I \ 



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ii6 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

David Thomson celebrated the occasion in these lines, — 

'' Ye ladies so fair, and yeomen so bright, 
Who have honoured our ball with your presence to-night, 
Accept of the thanks our bosom now feels. 
Along with the blessing of all Galashiels. 
When youth and when beauty at Charity's call 
Assemble, the motive ennobles the ball." 

These gatherings were maintained annually for a few years, 
but in 1839, principally on account of lowering the price of the 
tickets, it was found that a portion of the donations had been 
required to liquidate the expenditure, and they were then 
discontinued. 

An extraordinary exodus from the town and district took 
place about this period. It would appear as if it had been 
going on for some years, as, in 1826, the Rev. James Henderson 
nearly lost heart in consequence of the falling off in his 
congregation owing to emigration. James Hogg, the Ettrick 
Shepherd, refers to the circumstance in 1833 in the following 
words, — 

** But never till now did the Borderers rush from their native country with 
all the symptoms of reckless despair. It is most deplorable. The whole of 
our most valuable peasantry and operative manufacturers are leaving- us. All 
who have made a little money to freight them over the Atlantic and procure 
them a settlement in America, Van Dieman's land, or New South Wales, are 
hurrying from us, as from a place infected with the plague. Every day the 
desire to emigrate increases both in amount and in intensity. In the 
industrious village of Galashiels, fifty-two are already booked for trans- 
portation." 

What the reasons may have been for this unusual state 
of things cannot be easily given, except that the people had 
become afflicted with a mania for emigration, such as has 
been witnessed within comparatively recent years. Though 
trade had been extremely bad in the town for some years, 
at this particular time work was plentiful, as a paragraph froni 
a provincial paper would denote, — 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 117 

''Having lately had occasion to visit the thriving town of Galashiels, I 
was delighted to witness the prevailing stir and bustle. On conversing with 
some of the most extensive manufacturers, I was informed that orders were 
coming in far faster than they could be completed, and that while Galashiels 
cloth still maintained its predominance, the manufacture of woollen checked 
shawls of various colours, lately introduced, are now brought to great 
perfection. *' 

1836 In 1836, in order to ascertain the viev^rs which existed 

relative to the introduction of municipal government, a Com- 
mission examined the Baron Bailie and some of the principal 
inhabitants, all of whom agreed that a change was indispensable. 
While the local authority within the barony was limited, there was 
no local jurisdiction over those parts of the town that lay beyond 
it, and which contained more than half of the population. The 
Bailie stated that, though he had no powers outside the barony, 
his recommendations as Magistrate were ordinarily obeyed. 
Great practical inconvenience arose in connection with the 
police in consequence of the town being situated in two counties, 
by reason of the ready opportunity afforded to delinquents of 
passing from one county to another. Inconvenience was like- 
wise experienced from the distance of the county towns, Selkirk 
and Jedburgh. Much embarrassment was also felt for want 
of power to impose a compulsory assessment for cleaning, 
lighting, and paving, as experience had proved that the expense 
of these could not be effectually defrayed by voluntary subscrip- 
tion. A junction of all the portions of the town, in relation 
to jurisdiction and police, was required, the criminal authority 
to be equal to that of a Justice of the Peace, and the 
Civil Courts empowered to try actions for debt to the amount 

of ;^5- 

A diversity of opinion existed between the Bailie and the 

inhabitants regarding the necessary qualification to secure a vote 

While declining to give an opinion regarding a popularly-elected 

Magistracy, the Bailie favoured a qualification of a yearly 

rent in property to the amount of ;^I5. The inhabitants, on 

the other hand, considered that the Municipality should consist 

of a Magistrate and three Councillors popularly elected, — the 



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ii8 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

qualification being jCio in property and tenancy. On this foot- 
ing there would have been about 115 electors; and, if the qualifi- 
cation was jCSj the number would have been increased to 150. 

The Commissioners considered it important to ascertain 
what the inhabitants thought the boundaries of the proposed 
burgh should be, in the event of its being created, and the 
following limits were agreed upon, — 

** From the dam head north to the Edinburgh road, and east to a point 
north of the farm house of Langhau^h, thence across Gala at Langhaugh 
ford, thence down the south side of the water to the foot of the mill lade, 
thence to a point at the south of the Burgher Meeting-house at the Selkirk 
road, from thence to the south side of Gala House, and in line with the south 
end of Mr Lees' mill to the mill dam." 

The Commissioners concurred in the opinion that these 
boundary lines were in all respects suitable. From the details 
given, it was considered that there could be no doubt that 
the town of Galashiels, in its most extensive meaning, should 
have conferred upon it a municipal government, adjusted 
on such principles as would unite rules for its security, in 
its actual state, with provisions adapted to its probable future 
expansion. 

Increased facilities, both as regards the means of travelling 
and the transmission of goods, were enjoyed by the inhabitants 
1837 in 1837. There were now four coaches passing through the 
town every lawful day, — only the Mail running on the Sabbath. 
These were, — the ^^ Royal Mail'* from London to Edinburgh, 
which called at the Bridge Inn every day at twelve o'clock; the 
*^Blucher," from Jedburgh to Edinburgh, called at 10 a.m. 
at Ford's, Buckholmside ; the ^^ Standard," from Carlisle to 
Edinburgh, called at the Bridge Inn at 3.30 p.m.; and the 
*^ Chevy Chase,'' from Newcastle, called at 5 p.m. at Wilson's, 
Buckholmside. The ^^Blucher" ran to Jedburgh every Tuesday, 
Thursday, and Saturday; the ^^ Royal Mail" to London every 
morning at 10.30 a.m.; and the ^* Standard" at 8.30 p.m., going 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. itg 

through Selkirk, Hawick, Langholm, and Longtown. For 
London and Newcastle the '* Chevy Chase" left at ii a.m., 
going by Melrose and Jedburgh. 

Besides a considerable addition to the horses and carts 
employed in the coal and lime traffic, the number of carriers 
to Edinburgh had increased to six, to Hawick three, to Carlisle 
two, and one each to Newcastle, Selkirk, Lilliesleaf, Lauder, 
Kelso, and Melrose. 

At this time a grievance arose in connection with the carry- 
ing trade, owing to the exorbitant rates charged by the 
Roxburghshire Road Trustees at Whitlaw toll-bar, which had 
been raised to treble the amount charged in Midlothian. In order 
to arrive at a better understanding with the county author- 
ities, a meeting was held in Galashiels, at which John Sanderson, 
timber merchant, presided. A committee was appointed to 
attend to the interests of the town, and the following intimation 
was made to the Trustees, — 

**The inhabitants of Galashiels and neighbourhood have resolved that 
until a satisfactory modification of the rates at Whitlaw toll-bar takes place, 
to send all their carts round by Clovenfords and Crosslee, and to purchase no 
coal from any person or persons whatever not carted as aforesaid. And they 
further bind themselves not to employ any carrier but those that conform to 
the above resolution. This to take effect in the space of eight days from this 
date, when due notice will be given to all concerned. 

On the part of the inhabitants a committee has been appointed to 
negotiate with the toll-keeper for an enumeration of differences in order that a 
regular and satisfactory adjustment may be made, until the Trustees in their 
wisdom reverse the grievance complained of." 

This action on the part of the inhabitants proved successful, 
and the obnoxious overcharge was speedily removed. 

In connection with the death of John Scott of Gala, which 
1840 occurred in 1840, the following letter was written to George 
Paterson, manufacturer, by Mrs Scott. It explains itself, and 
is interesting on account of the light it throws on funeral customs 
at that period, and also on the kindly relations that existed 
between the town's people and the Scott family. 



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120 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

*'Gala House, September I'jth^ 1840. 

Sir, — It was only last week I was able to make inquiries relative to the 
sad ceremonies in this house on Friday the 14th August, as my sons were not 
able to give me much information on such a painful subject, and I am deeply 
grieved to find that owing to the unfortunate circumstance of the family being 
from home, and also from the youth and total inexperience of my son, that 
some distressing mistakes did occur in the arrangements I had directed to be 
made. I consider it only due to myself, however painful to my feelings, to trouble 
you, as a manufacturer (and also as you were intimately connected in early 
life with this family) with a statement of directions given by our friend Mr Tod, 
W.S., and myself. Mr Tod wrote on Monday, i ith, directing that all tenants, 
feuars, and respectable inhabitants of Galashiels were to be invited, that 
refreshments were to be laid out in the dining room for any one, that wine and 
cake were to be provided, and given to every one. No spirits whatever to be 
given, and dinners for the tenants and feuars at the inns, &c. 

I felt so much anxiety (from our absence) that everything should be con- 
ducted in a proper and respectful manner toward our neighbours, that I thought 
it necessary to make the exertion of writing myself, to mention the above 
arrangements, and also gave direction that all the company should be shown 
into the drawing room, dining room, and lobbies, and that plenty of wine was 
to be handed about with cake. I sent a list of those invited, in order to be 
assured that as far as one could know as few persons as possible were omitted. 

On Thursday morning I received a lettter from Mr Craig, stating that he 
understood that the factories were to be closed on the 14th, and that the 
operatives wished either to attend in the procession, or to be drawn up from 
the gate, as we thought proper. I think this request was made through your 
means, and I do assure you, that the deep sympathy and kind feelings shown 
by all ranks in Galashiels were most gratefully felt by the family, and will not 
be forgotten. 

I felt very great satisfaction on receiving this last mark of respect and 
attachment, and returned an answer by the earliest coach, saying so, and that 
I wished the operatives should be drawn up from the house door, and that each 
operative should get one glass of whisky. 

It gives me and my family great distress to learn that some of these 
arrangements were not so well carried through as we would have wished, and 
that many gentlemen who honoured us with their attendance should not have 
been in the house or received those civilities and attentions necessary to be 
observed on such a solemn occasion. 

You will confer a great favour upon me if you will be so kind as offer my 
deep regrets to the feuars and inhabitants for the unfortunate errors, and that 
I do trust, that under all the circumstances I have mentioned to you, they will 
have the goodness to accept of my sincere and heartfelt apologies. 

I remain, Sir, Yours obediently, 

To Mr Gborge Patbrson. Mad aline Scott." 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 121 

In Fullarton's Gazetteer of Scotland^ published in 1843, 
the appearance and condition of the town are thus described, — 

''Galashiels consists of one long bent street and two shorter and new 
streets, the whole dotted round with detached buildings winged with drying 
and bleaching grounds, and stretching along a narrow strip of plain between 
the river and the neighbouring heights. On the north side the town is more 
irregular in form, ascending in straggling lines of buildings up to the Edin- 
burgh road. The two districts are connected with a stone bridge, an iron 
suspension bridge, and an ingeniously-constructed timber bridge, the two 
latter being for foot passengers only. All the houses are built of blue whin- 
stone, and, though a manufacturing town, it partakes not a jot of the dinginess 
so generally belonging to places of its class. The factories being worked by 
water, the ground attached to them being painted over with the many-coloured 
fabrics which are hung out to complete the process for the market, the 
dispersedness of the seats of stir and activity at intervals on the banks of the 
pastoral stream, the picturesque features of the rich landscape which sweep 
around, all contribute to protect Galashiels from descending to the sootiness 
of most other seats of manufacture. With the exception of the churches the 
town is destitute of all public buildings. Even the shops are few and tiny 
compared either with its population or manufacturing importance. Its streets, 
during the hours of labour, have the silence and wealthless aspect almost of a 
hamlet in the Highlands. Its markets are defunct, and its fairs are fast 
following their example. There are branch offices of the Leith Bank and the 
National Bank of Scotland, a savings bank, a friendly society, a reading 
room, two subscription libraries, a small printing office, and an excellent 
grammar and boarding school, besides other schools. The town has no 
police establishment, though it is watched under night by a constable pSiid by 
the county of Roxburgh. Attempts have been made to light and clean it by 
voluntary subscription, which hitherto have been only partially successful. 
There is also a brewery, and an establishment for the tanning of leather, the 
dressing of skins, and the construction of machinery for woollen manufacturers. 
There are 9 factories, each employing about 40 persons. Of late years it has 
made rapid advances, and it is possible that the town will continue to increase.'' 

1844 In 1844 a meeting was held in the Bridge Inn assembly 

room for the purpose of taking steps to promote a line of rail- 
way between Edinburgh and Galashiels, with the view of 
ultimately extending it to Hawick and Selkirk. The chair was 
occupied by Major-General Sir James Russell, K.C.B,, of 
Ashiestiel. The chairman explained the object of the meeting, 
and stated that the capital necessary to form the line, estimated 



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122 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

to amount to ;^ 10,000 per mile, was to be provided by a London 
company. The Hon. John E. Elliot, William Hastie,. Baron 
Bailie, successor to George Craig; James Curie, Melrose; and 
Bailie Muir, Selkirk, also commended the object of the meeting, 
and a committee was appointed to make inquiry and report to 
a meeting to be held at a future date. In due course another 
meeting was held in the same place to hear the committee's 
report — Mr Hastie in the chair. According to the statement, it 
appeared that an agreement had been entered into between the 
projectors of the proposed line and the North British Railway 
Company, who had agreed to pay all expenses already incurred 
for survey, etc., to obtain a bill from Parliament, and to take all 
necessary steps to complete the undertaking without delay. 

There were comparatively few public entertainments at 
this period. It was customary, especially during the summer 
months, for the town to be visited with shows of various 
kinds, menageries, etc., but the great event of the season 
was the appearance of Ord, the greatest equestrian Scot- 
land ever saw, whose performance was carried out in the 
open air. In his case there was no need for agents in advance, 
processions, or other means calculated to raise an excite- 
ment. The boys belonging the town were always posted up 
regarding the arrival of Delaney, his clown, whom, along with 
the able-bodied members of the company, they watched while they 
prepared the **ring.** This latterly used to occupy that ground 
upon which Ladhope School is built. 

The town had begun to show signs of a vigorous growth, 
1845 as, in 1845, the following paragraph appeared in a Dumfries 
newspaper, — 

* * On visiting the town of Galashiels lately, we were struck with the great 
progress it had made in new manufactories and handsome dwellings and shops. 
Victoria Buildings is a place worthy of Edinburgh. The population of the 
town is now fully five thousand, and there are three banks in it, all doing well. 

The water power is exhausted between this and the Tweed, but in 
summer time, when the dam is low, several of the manufacturers are using 
steam as a supplement.'' 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 123 

1846 In 1846 there was quite a flutter among the friendly 

societies in the town owing to the idea that the payments were 
not sufficient to ensure the amount of relief they were entitled 
to according to their rules. The Rechabite and Oddfellows' 
Societies numbered about 200 members each, and the first broke 
up. The Oddfellows, by a majority, also agreed to dissolve the 
society and divide the funds, but the office-bearers, who were in 
the minority, declined to hand over the money; eventually, how- 
ever, it also was dissolved. 



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T' 



CHAPTER XVII. 

HE formation of the railway had now begun in the 
district, and Comelybank and a portion of Low Buck- 
holmside had been acquired by the Railway Company, 

who utilised these properties to provide quarters for the navvies 

employed in its construction. 

I 1847 In 1847 the contractor for the work in the immediate locality, 

named Dodds, became bankrupt, and as the men employed on that 

I section of the line found themselves without either food or credit, 

disturbances were not long in arising. In a few days, however, 
money was sent from Edinburgh, and the wages were paid; but, 
as the work had been brought to a temporary stoppage, idleness 
prevailed, and a considerable amount of drunkenness ensued. 
Under these conditions it was not long till the police had to 
interfere, and they were being roughly handled when the town^s 
people came to their assistance, and drove the navvies to their 
quarters. As soon as the police retired they again sallied forth 
and smashed all the windows in Low Buckholmside. The 
county authorities were now communicated with, and the 
Sheriif came upon the scene. The Riot Act was read from the 
top of the steps at the Bridge Inn door, and the Sheriff advised 
the inhabitants to retire to their homes, and, if their services 
were required, they would be called out. Rather reluctantly, they 
obeyed. Stones were flying like hail, and a number of people 
were cut and bruised, one having his arm broken. The 
police from the surrounding districts were drafted into the 
town, and, assisted by the town's people, the riot was finally 
quelled without involving more bloodshed than resulted from a 
number of broken heads. 

In consequence of the same bankruptcy, serious rioting 
occurred at Lauder. The proprietor of the local * Hommy shop '* in 
connection with the railway belonged to that village, and, when the 

124 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 125 

contractor became bankrupt, he closed his shop and went home, 
A considerable number of the navvies went over to interview him, 
and, because he refused to supply goods on credit, a riot was the 
result. Before the people of Lauder could rest in security, it 
required the presence of a troop of dragoons, who were 
summoned from Jock's Lodge, Edinburgh. 

1848 The desire expressed in 1836 to the Municipal Commission 
by the inhabitants produced no result. In 1848 a move- 
ment was inaugurated by the town's people, and a meeting was 
called for the purpose of forming the town into a police burgh, 
under the Act passed during the reign of William IV., entitled 
^* An Act to enable burghs in Scotland to establish a general 
system of police." The meeting was composed of those within 
the barony and residing within 1000 yards of its limits who 
paid a yearly rent of jCio. During the proceedings a con- 
siderable amount of opposition to the proposal was manifested. 
Dr McDougall made a strong statement regarding the continued 
prevalence of fever and the necessity for the town being 
put into a better sanitary condition. A vote was taken, 
when it was found that ninety voted for the adoption of the 
Act in its entirety, and twenty-six for the clauses relating to 
cleaning and lighting only. The opposition mustered thirty- 
eight votes against the adoption of the Act, and twenty-six 
of them voted against the clauses regarding paving, lighting, 
and water. At a meeting held shortly afterwards to choose 
Commissioners, the following were elected, — ^John Sibbald 
and Henry Ballantyne, manufacturers; William Rutherford, 
writer; John Haldane, brewer; William Wood, skinner; Robert 
Haldane, banker; Robert Hall, builder; John Milne, baker; 
John Govan, merchant; and Dr Weir. 

In the meantime, however, the opposition had taken steps 
to test the legality of the proceedings, and on the 20th July, 

1849 1849, Lord Ivory pronounced the following interlocutor, — 

** The Lord Ordinary having heard counsel for the parties in this process 
of reduction, as well as in a separate process of suspension and interdict at the 
instance of the same parties, and considered the closed records in both with 



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126 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

the relative writings produced, and whole cause, conjoins the processes; finds 
that the Statute 3 & 4, William IV., Cap. 46 and 10 & 11 Vic. Cap. 39, do not, 
for the purpose of these Statutes, authorise the extending of the boundaries of 
any burgh of barony, such as that of Galashiels here in dispute, beyond the 
limits of the county within which the said burgh of barony is itself situated, 
and that none of the provisions or machinery of the said Statutes are applicable 
to the case, when the original burgh and any part of the extended limits to be 
thereto attached by the force of the Statutes happens to be in different counties, 
and are subject to the jurisdiction of different sheriffs. Therefore, to this 
extent and effect, sustains the reason of reduction and suspension.'' 

This decision was appealed against, but the First Division of 
the Court of Session supported the decree of the Lord Ordinary 
on the same ground, but refused expenses, for the reason that 
the success of the action frustrated the substantial intention of 
the Act. 
1850 Again, in 1850, an attempt was made to bring the town into 

a healthier condition. A meeting was held in the Bridge 
Inn assembly room for the purpose of taking advantage of a 
Police Improvement Act, which Parliament had recently passed. 
Owing to the death of William Hastie, the Baron Bailie, which 
had occurred the previous year, James Stalker, his successor, 
occupied the chair. After discussion, William Rutherford, 
writer, moved the adoption of the whole Act, with the exception 
of the clause relating to water, which was supported by Hugh 
Lees, writer. The meeting appointed a committee to take the 
necessary steps in order to bring the proposal to a successful 
issue. On the i6th November following a meeting was held of 
householders or male occupiers of dwelling-houses or other 
heritable property to the value of ;^io, for the purpose of electing 
Commissioners to carry into effect the provisions of the Police 
Act which had been adopted. Sheriff Somerville presided, and, 
after various names had been proposed, he declared that 
William Sanderson, wood merchant; John Sibbald, manufacturer; 
Adam Paterson, wood merchant; Robert Sanderson, manufac- 
turer; John Cochrane, manufacturer; Robert Hall, builder; 
William Wood, skinner; William Rutherford, writer; and Henry 
Monteith, manufacturer, were duly elected Commissioners of 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 127 

Police. At their first meeting William Rutherford was 
elected senior Magistrate, and William Sanderson and John 
Sibbald, junior Magistrates. Hugh Lees, writer, was elected 
Clerk to the Commissioners, and John Pringle, writer, 
was appointed Collector and Treasurer. James M^Bain, 
Edinburgh, was appointed superintendent of police, and arrange- 
ments were at once entered into for cleaning and lighting 
the town, which, it was agreed, should be watched night 
and day. It was resolved that the police force should 
consist of a superintendent and three constables. The superin- 
tendent's salary was fixed at jCtS per annum, the constables 
receiving twelve shillings per week, with the usual clothing. 
The superintendent was also appointed Fiscal and Inspector of 
Nuisances at an additional salary of jCs^ Energetic measures 
were taken to clean the burgh, a plan of which was prepared by 
Mr Mitchell, C.E., Perth. The Salmon Inn ball-room was 
secured for a court room and for holding the Commissioners' 
meetings. The rate of assessment was fixed at one shilling per 
pound, the number of inhabitants at this time being 5918, 
consisting of 29 11 males and 3007 females. 

It would appear that the energy with which the Com- 
missioners entered into their various duties had in a year or two 
1853 considerably cooled down, as, in 1853, great dissatisfaction 
existed in regard to the manner in which the Act was being 
carried out, the editor of the Border Advertiser breaking out in 
the following strain, — 

** Wanted, for the Burgh of Galashiels, one or two dashing doctors, a few 
good business-like undertakers, and several acres of virgin land as a cholera 
burial-ground. Application to be made to the Commissioners of Police, 
Galashiels. 

Impassable streets, greasy footpaths, and reeking middens are yet to be 
the glories of our town. A rank luxuriance of filth is to surround us for 
another year, the cholera year. 

* Night, 
Even the zenith of her dark domain 
Is sunshine, to the colour of our fate/ 



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128 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Wonderfully economical Commissioners we have; manhood labour is too 
expensive for street cleaning, so we have old men and mere youths on the 
footpaths and roadways, progressing at a snail's gallop, an inch an hour. On 
our lamp ladders impish children, scarce old enough to feed themselves, are 
bobbing their heads through lamp glasses, instead of cleaning them, and 
endangering their little lives in the attempt to straddle from one rung of the 
ladder to another, in their passing from the solid earth to the lamp top's giddy 
height. Cleanliness, thorough-going cleanliness in this cholera year above all 
years; and if the Police Commissioners are not prepared to enforce this upon 
their servants, their responsibility to the town will be of a most heavy 
character." 

So much for the cleaning; the watching also appeared to 
have been conducted in the same cheese-paring spirit. The 
police were now receiving fourteen shillings per week, and this 
amount was in the opinion of some of the Commissioners 
unjustifiable extravagance, and a futile attempt was made 
to reduce the staff to one constable and the superintendent. 
^855 The agitation, however, was kept up, and in 1855 the staff 
was reduced to two constables and the superintendent, their 
hours of duty being thus appointed, — the superintendent from 
6 A.M. to 2 P.M.; Constable Gordon from 2 p.m. to i a.m.; 
and Constable Lees from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. 

1856 In 1856 William Rutherford, Chief Magistrate, retired, 

having served two terms of office, and John Cochrane, manu- 
facturer, was appointed Senior Magistrate. 

At this time the town received a visit from Kossuth, the 
Hungarian patriot. In order to allow opportunity for a fitting 
demonstration, the public works were closed for part of the day. 
Floral arches were erected at the Railway Station and the top of 
Bridge Street, while the route of the procession was decorated 
with flags. On the arrival of the distinguished visitor, a pro- 
cession was formed, and, headed by the town's band, M. and 
Mme. Kossuth were escorted to the Commercial Hotel, where 
they were presented with a plaid and shawl subscribed for by the 
general community. The plaid was manufactured by Robert 
Frier, and the shawl, a Macdonald tartan, by George Lees & Co. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 129 

In the evening Kossuth delivered a lecture in the East 
United Presbyterian Church, which had been granted for the 
occasion. The building was crowded, and the proceeds, which 
amounted to £^0 after expenses had been paid, were remitted to 
the lecturer. 

The necessity for a suitable hall had now begun to be severely 
felt, there being no room in the town capable of containing more 
than 300 people. During the winter months lectures and con- 
certs were of weekly occurrence. Artistes like Toole, Sam 
Cowell, and others famous in their day, visited* the town 
occasionally, but only a small proportion of those desirous of 

1857 being present could find accommodation. In 1857 ^^^ question 
of a public hall was mooted, and a committee was appointed to 
look out for a suitable site. 

1858 In 1858 great excitement prevailed in the town in connection 
with the proposed railway between Hawick and Carlisle. The 
North British Railway Company proposed to carry their line by 
way of Liddesdale, while the Caledonian Railway Company 
considered that their scheme via Langholm was preferable. 
Plashett's coal at 9s ^d per ton was the bait that influenced the 
manufacturers in Galashiels to strongly support the claims of the 
North British Company, but the coals have not yet arrived. 

The town was now rapidly extending, — the old landmarks 
of the once rural village had passed away, the cherished haunts 
of the boyhood of the older inhabitants were no longer to be 
seen, the spirit of change was over all. The once crystal stream 
was polluted, the finny tribe had disappeared, the Brig 
pool, the Rocks, the Cauld back were no more their favourite 
haunts. Darling's, and other haughs, once green and 
gowan-clad, were covered with houses, the face of nature was 
entirely changed; at one time a local rhymer states, — 

** Frae Tweed to Kilnknowe the whin and broom, 
Clad haugh an' howe wi* their gowden bloom; 
An* the sparkling stream that never ran toom, 
Made a picture o* the bonnie banks o' Gala." 



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I30 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The old manners and customs in the growing town were 
undergfoing a revolution, principally owing- to the influx of 
strangers; and the kindly clannish feelings that used to prevail 
were fast disappearing. 

Previous to the passing of the Vaccination Act, the utility of 
inoculation as a palliative against the ravages of small-pox was 
fully appreciated in the town. It was customary for half a 
dozen mothers with their babies to meet by appointment for 
the purpose of **getting the bairn's arm dune*' by some **skeely 
body,'' who performed the operation with the point of a needle. 
The matter was procured from the arm of some healthy child, 
with whose genealogy and parentage each one was familiar. 

Weddings were great events which broke the monotony of 
daily life, and attracted a considerable amount of attention, the 
neig-hbours watching with great interest the arrival of the 
gaily-attired guests, linked arm in arm. All the children in 
the district, supplemented on the occasion by a large 
contingent from other parts of the town, congregated in front of 
the house in which the ceremony was about to be celebrated. 
The departure of the minister was the signal for them to commence 
making as much noise as their throats were capable of emitting, 
which only ceased when the **best man*' appeared at the door and 
scattered a few handfuls of copper coins among the crowd. In a 
moment it became a seething mass of boys and girls tumbling 
and sprawling over each other, all striving with might and main 
to pick up as large a share of the coins as possible. 

When disease laid its fell hand upon any member of the 
community, many kindly enquiries were made by the neighbours 
regarding the condition of the patient. When the dreaded event 
took place, it was customary to send funeral invitations to friends 
and relatives at a distance, while some kindly neighbour 
went round the immediate vicinity, calling at each door and 
giving what was termed a general bidding. Shortly before 
the appointed hour for ^ lifting,'' the grave-digger made his 
appearance, carrying two handspokes and a bag containing 
the mortcloth. The coffin was soon brought out, and, after 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 131 

the handspokes were adjusted^ the mortcloth was spread over it. 
With the chief mourner at the head of the coffin, the proces- 
sion moved slowly off, while, at frequent intervals, friends 
relieved each other in the progress to the kirkyard. 

Modern progress has also given the death-blow to the 
old Border sports, which had been maintained in the town 
for generations. Shinty and the old style of football have 
disappeared, and since the ground on Hollybush farm was en- 
closed and cultivated, the ancient game of handball has also been 
numbered with the things that were. These and similar pastimes 
were at one time associated with all that was free and hearty 
in the out-door sports of the town. Once certain names decided 
the respective sides, latterly the married played against the 
single, while occasionally the different parishes strove for 
superiority. At these great events the inhabitants turned out in 
crowds to witness the contest and cheer on their respective 
champions. 



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CHAPTER XVIII. 

1859 ' I ^HE Burns centenary occurred in 1859. It was enthusiastic- 
I ally observed in the town, a half-holiday being enjoyed 
'^ on the occasion. A public dinner was held in the Abbots- 
ford Arms Hotel, at which upwards of fifty \Vere present, the 
chair being occupied by Dr McDougall. Another company 
dined in the Salmon Inn; while a third, numbering 170, met in 
the Bridge Inn. The temperance party held a soiree and con- 
cert in Union Street Chapel. The Freemasons dined in the 
Commercial Hotel, while other parties were accommodated in 
the Victoria and Railway Hotels. 

On the 30th July, 1859, the Galashiels games were inaug- 
urated in honour of the birthday of the Master of Gala. They 
proved a great success; the assemblage, the largest ever seen in 
the town, was estimated at ten thousand. 

At the annual election of Commissioners of Police, John 
Cochrane, Chief Magistrate, retired, and George Bathgate, 
manufacturer, was elected to the vacant office. 

The negotiations for a site for the proposed public hall had 
been going on, prospects were held out of securing one in 
the Market Place, and it was proposed to remove the school to a 
free site to be granted by Major Scott of Gala at Wilderhaugh. 
Owing to some unfortunate misunderstanding between Mr 
Scott and the committee, the offer of the free site in Market 
Place was withdrawn. However, after years of agitation 
and discussion, the question was solved by James Sime, 
manufacturer, who gave the committee a site on the south side 
of the High Street, belonging to Botany Mill feu. The property 
on the line of the street was acquired for jCsJOy which, on being 
removed, formed the entrance. The hall was erected by Messrs 
Herbertson & Son at an estimated cost of jC^^SS. At the same 

132 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 133 

time, after long delay, the erection of the Corn Exchange was 
intrusted to Messrs Stirling, builders. On the 12th September, 
i860 i860, one of the greatest demonstrations ever witnessed in 
the town took place on the occasion of laying the foundation 
stones of these buildings. Originally it was intended that 
they should both be under one roof, but this arrangement 
was departed from. The day was all that could be desired for 
an out-door display, and, about half-past one, a procession was 
formed, consisting of, — the Gala Forest Rifles, Dyers' Corpor- 
ation, Manufacturers' Corporation, Commissioners of Police, 
Magistrates, directors of the Public Hall and Corn Exchange 
Companies, deputations from seventeen lodges of Freemasons, 
in order of seniority; Galashiels Brass Band, Grand Lodge of 
Scotland, J. Whyte Melville, M.W.D.G.M. The line of 
procession was crowded with spectators, while flags were 
profusely displayed along the route. After arriving at 
the building, the Rev. Robert Blair, chaplain to the local 
Freemason lodge, offered prayer, and thereafter a leaden 
box was inserted in a cavity prepared for it in the foundation 
stone, containing the current coins, with a narrative regarding 
the building engrossed on vellum, newspapers of that date, &c. 
The stone was laid with all the ceremonies observed on such 
occasions, the proceedings being concluded by the band playing 
the National Anthem. The procession was then re-formed and 
marched to the Corn Exchange by way of High Street, Channel 
Street, and Market Square. The same order was observed as 
had been used at the hall, but this time prayer was offered 
by the Rev. Dr Arnot, the grand chaplain. The Freemasons 
afterwards proceeded to their lodge-room; and a public dinner 
was held within the Exchange, which concluded the proceedings. 
When the building was erected, William Gill, of the Waverley 
public-house, offered to provide a clock to the value of ;^ 100 
to be erected on the building and put under the charge of the 
Commissioners of Police, provided they paid him interest 
amounting to 4 per cent, during his life-time and that of his wife 
should she survive him. This offer was accepted, the Corn 



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134 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Exchange Company agreeing to pay half the interest, and the 
Commissioners undertook to erect and maintain the clock, which 
cost about £^^. The Commissioners also agreed to procure a 
clock and bell to be placed on the Public Hall, to which the 
directors consented. In this case the agreement was **that the 
clock and bell shall be the property of the Commissioners, under 
their exclusive management and control, upheld at their expense 
and removable at their pleasure.'* The clock and bell cost ;£J'200. 
When the hall was completed, it was arranged between the 
Commissioners and directors that accommodation f6r a court- 
room, &c., should be provided at an annual rental of ;^2i. The 
hall was formally opened by a concert, given by Mr Howard 
and party from the Operetta House, Edinburgh, at which a 
grand piano, presented by Mr Broadwood of London, was used 
for the first time. 

At this time a museum was established, William Kemp 
being curator. Its rules set forth that **the Society shall be 
called the Galashiels Scientific and Antiquarian Society.'* 
The annual contribution from ordinary members was 4s, and 
donors of £2 were elected life members. The collection found 
house-room in Bridge Street in premises belonging to Mr Kemp, 
where a goodly store of interesting articles of various kinds 
was soon on view; the charge for admission being threepence. 
The museum existed till 1867, when, owing to the want of 
interest shown by the public, it was resolved to wind up the 
Society. The various articles were returned to the donors, 
if desired, the remainder being sold, and the proceeds handed 
over to the Mechanics* Institute. 

1 86 1 In 1 86 1 occurred the death of Prince Albert, in connection 

with which the Commissioners of Police sent the following 
address of condolence, — 

** To the Queen's most Gracious Majesty. 
May it please your Majesty, 

We, your Majesty's loyal subjects, the Magistrates and 
Commissioners of the burgh of Galashiels, desire to express to your Majesty 
our profound sympathy and sincere grief for the great loss your Majesty has 



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William Rutherford John Cochrane 

George Craig 
George Bathgate William Haldane 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 135 

sustained in the death of your late Consort, His Royal Highness Prince Albert 
The unexpected calamity which has befallen your Majesty, the Royal 
family, and the nation at large, is most truly deplored by us in common with 
our fellow-subjects, and we individually participate in your affliction on the 
present trying occasion. 

That the Supreme Ruler of the universe may be pleased to grant unto 
your Majesty even in this affliction, the consolation of His Holy Spirit, and 
may long spare you to reign in the hearts of a loyal and affectionate people, 
is the earnest and sincere prayer of your Majesty's loyal and dutiful subjecte, 
the Magistrates and Commissioners of Galashiels. 

Signed and sealed by authority and in name of the Magistrates of said 
Burgh, this 26th day of December, 1861. 

George Bathgate, 

Chief Magistrate:' 

1862 In 1862 the Commissioners requested Mr Jardine, of 

Edinburgh, to make a survey of the town for a drainage scheme. 
He reported that 

**The proposed sewer started at the confluence of the mill lade with the 
Gala, and was continued alongside the stream till it arrived at Victoria Mill. 
From thence it diverged, and was carried up Channel Street and High Street 
to the head of Island Street This main sewer was to be four feet high and 
two feet three inches wide, built with stones, having brick and lime for the 
bottom. A pipe eighteen inches in diameter was to be laid from Island Street 
to Tweed Mill, to where the lade crossed under the Peebles road. At this 
point a sluice was to be erected for flushing the drain. Stirling Street was to 
have a separate pipe to a point in the main sewer near Victoria Mill. From 
Buckholmside a large branch pipe was to be led into Buckholmside Mill lade, 
ivhile from the High town there was to be a tile drain into the main sewer; the 
estimated cost of the work being ;^864S." 

The Commissioners accepted at this time an offer from 
Major Scott of Gala to convey his right regarding the Market 
Square to the town on the following conditions, — 

*M. That on market days the whole square be available for market purposes. 

II. If temporary erections shall be allowed at any time by the Magistrates, 

such shall be kept eight feet back from the west side of the 
ground opposite the Free Church, and at least six feet from the 
sewers on the sides of the square. No such erections to be 
allowed longer than six days at one time. 

III. That the income be expended in keeping the square in good order* " 



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136 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1863 In 1863 the question of a new water supply was raised^ and 
the wells in the town were analysed, a considerable proportion 
being found to be more or less polluted, A committee was 
appointed to make investigation. They reported upon Caddon, 
Whitlaw Burn, and Cauldshiels Loch, and application was made 
to the several proprietors regarding terms, etc. Mr Pringle of 
Torwoodlee was the only one prepared to negotiate, and he 
expressed his willingness to allow water to be taken from the 
Caddon. Previous to going further a-field, it was agreed to 
obtain a report from Mr Leslie, C.E., Edinburgh, regarding 
the quantity of water that could be collected in the neighbour- 
hood of the existing water-works, and Mr Milne of Faldonside 
was applied to for liberty to make an inspection of Cauldshiels 
Loch, to see what supply could be procured without lowering 
the natural level, but it was ascertained that this source was 
not available. 

1864 In 1864 the burgh boundaries were extended so as to include 
every house in the town and immediate district, except Apple- 
treeleaves and Netherdale Cottages. 

In the interim, the agitation for a new water supply had been 
kept up. Meetings were held and statistics produced showing 
that the death rate had risen from 16*37 P^^ thousand in 1861 to 
21*88 in 1864. This increased mortality, it was alleged, was 
due to the polluted state of the public wells. Investigation had 
been made, and, in the case of three bakers who used the wells, 
it was found that one had a pigsty and dunghill within twenty 
feet of the well, a second had two cesspools within twenty-six 
feet, and the third had a pigsty thirty-five feet from his well, 
besides two dunghills forty-two feet distant. 

1865 At length, in 1865, the water clauses of the Police Act were 
adopted by the Commissioners, and, upon a poll being taken, 
sixty-seven supported their action, one hundred and ten opposed 
it, and seventy-eight remained neutral. 

George Bathgate, Chief Magistrate, retired at the annual 
election, and William Haldane, brewer, was appointed in 
. his place. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 137 

At the foot of Overhaugh Street, a little below the Corn 
Exchange, stood an erection known as ^* Sandy's Well/' This 
well occupied a position within a very short distance of the sewer, 
having, latterly, a wall built round three sides, and covered with 
a sloping roof. It was credited with being the best water in the 
town, and had been long used. Its origin is unknown, but in 
1826 Sir Walter Scott makes a reference to it in his diary, 
having at that date been engaged in settling some dispute 
regarding it. 

1867 On the threatened approach of cholera in 1867, another 
investigation was made into the state of the wells in the town, 
many of which were totally unfit for domestic use. Again the 
Commissioners resolved to adopt the water clauses of the Police 
Act. A remonstrance, bearing fifty-seven signatures and repre- 
senting property valued at ^^923, was laid before the Chief 
Magistrate, and a poll demanded. Upon this being done, 
ninety voted in favour, and one hundred and twenty-four against 
the action of the Commissioners. 

Queen Victoria visited the Borders in 1867, when she 
became the guest of the Duke of Roxburghe at Floors Castle. 
On the 22nd August she visited Melrose and Abbotsford, her 
description of the journey being recorded as follows, — 

**A number of people from Galashiels, and even from the North of 
England, had come to the town and swelled the crowd. Many also had 
spread themselves along the outskirts. We took the other side of the valley 
returning, and saw Galashiels, very prettily situated, a flourishing town, 
famous for its tweeds and shawls. The men are called * The braw lads of 
Gala Water.'" 

1868 In 1868 another attempt was made to introduce a water 
supply, but on this occasion it was found that a majority of the 
Commissioners were opposed to the idea, and nothing further 
was done in the matter. 

Consequent on Galashiels being included in the newly-formed 
Parliamentary constituency termed the Hawick Burghs, all the 
Magistrates and Commissioners resigned at the annual election, 



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138 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

and fifteen Town Councillors were elected, who, at their first 
meeting, chose John Hall, builder, to be Provost. An effort 
was made to have the town divided into wards, but, owing to 
the population being at that date under 10,000, this could not 
be accomplished. 

1869 The water question was again raised in 1869, and the 

Local Authority employed Mr Leslie, C.E., Edinburgh, to 
. survey the district, and report on the best means of obtaining a 
domestic supply, capable of affording forty gallons per day for 
a population of 20,000. An analysis of Caddon and Lugate 
was made, and it was found that they were equally suitable. 
The flow also was gauged, and although the season had been 
an exceptionally dry one, Caddon provided the requisite supply, 
while Lugate yielded fully a half more. A probable cost for 
bringing a supply from Caddon was seen to be too expensive, 
and the plans were modified to thirty gallons per day for a 
population of 15,000. To provide an eight inch pipe with 
filter and reservoir, not including a compensation pond, required 
;^ 1 9,000. On the scheme being submitted to the ratepayers, 
666 voted against it, 334 in its favour, and 629 gave no reply. 

Owing to the scarcity of water in the Buckholmside district, 
the inhabitants of that locality held a meeting for the purpose 
of considering the best means of acquiring a local scheme. 
Ladhope Burn had a flow of 14,000 gallons per day, and 
from this source it was expected that a supply might be 
obtained at the rate of sixpence per pound upon the rental 
of the district. However, it was discovered that, before pro- 
viding for compensation, the value of the land required for a 
reservoir, etc, the rate would require to be one shilling and six- 
pence. Eventually a supply was obtained from Buckholm Burn, 
a reservoir being built upon the side of Buckholm Hill. 

At the next meeting of the Local Authority held after the 
poll had been taken regarding the introduction of water. Provost 
Hall stated that those in favour of water were entitled to include 
all those who had refrained from voting, on the ground 
that these persons were willing to leave the matter in the 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 139 

hands of the Local Authority. He concluded by moving that 
the inquiry as to the cost and compensation should still be 
prosecuted. Eight voted for the motion, while seven sup- 
ported an amendment that nothing further should be done in the 
matter. 
1870 At the next election, in 1870, the inhabitants returned 

a majority of Councillors pledged to oppose the introduction of 
water, and the question, for the time being, fell into abeyance. 



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CHAPTER XIX. 

THE centenary of the birth of Sir Walter Scott, for whom 
the people of Galashiels had cherished kindly memories 
on account of his personal influence being always used 
187 1 to further their social and industrial interest, occurred in 187 1. 
It was, therefore, but fitting that, of all places in Scotland, 
such an event should be enthusiastically observed in Galashiels. 
The result took every one by surprise, as never in the 
history of the town had there been witnessed such a hearty and 
successful effort to pay respect to the memory of any man. The 
committee entrusted with the arrangements did not attempt 
to carry out anything grand or superlative. Their idea 
was to unite the largest possible number of the community in 
some simple way, so that they might endeavour to realize 
that the influence of the great man was still with them. 
Accordingly, it was arranged that there should be a great 
gathering in Gala Park, and the efforts of the committee to 
effect this purpose were heartily seconded by the Provost and 
Town Council. When the day arrived, the weather was beauti- 
ful. A general holiday was observed from nine o'clock, at which 
hour all the works in the town were closed. The streets were 
gay with flags and banners, triumphal arches were erected at 
various points; one in particular at Botany Mill, formed largely 
of coloured yarns, was the observed of all observers. The 
procession was composed of the Volunteers, Freemasons, Good 
Templars, tradesmen, employers and operatives. None hung 
back, but all appeared to be animated with one spirit. It started 
from the west end of the town, headed by the Good Templar 
saxhorn band, which was followed by the members of the firm and 
operatives from Buckholm Mill; Wheatlands Mill came next, then 
Tweed Mill and Tweed Place Mill followed in their order. Gala- 
bank Mill carried flags woven for the occasion, composed of 

140 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 141 

Sir Walter Scott, Rob Roy, and Meg Merrilies tartans; 
and also the flag belonging to the Weavers' Corporation. 
Wilderbank operatives came next, followed by the men employed 
in the Buckholmside Skinworks, then the workers from Comely- 
bank Mill, who wore sashes of the Scott tartan. The united 
building trades followed, and the operatives from Rosebank 
and Botany Mills. Then came the Burns Club, Freemasons, 
and the Good Templar lodges, comprising the ** Gala Water," 
^^ Alexander Combat," ^* Pride of the Border," ** Anchor of 
Hope," and ^*Snowdrop;" the Provost, Magistrates, and Town 
Council bringing up the rear. These comprised the west- 
end portion of the procession, and from the east end the town's 
band was followed by the members of the firm and employees 
from Netherdale Mill. On the way they were joined by the 
operatives from Abbot's Mill, Gala Mill, and Huddersfield Mill. 
The engineers from the Waverley Iron Works came next, 
carrying their models and trade emblems, and were followed by 
the workers from Nether Mill, Gas Works, and Mid Mill. 
When the Burgh Buildings were reached, the Volunteers, under 
Captain Cochrane, took their place at the head of the procession, 
preceded by the band of the 93rd regiment, which had been 
granted for the occasion. They continued the march up Bank 
Street, and returned to the Market Place by Overhaugh Street, 
where they were joined by the employers and workers from 
Victoria Mill, who wore sashes of the Victoria tartan. 
The Tailors' Corporation and the plumbers and gas-fitters 
now fell into the ranks, the rear being brought up by the 
general public. The march was continued down Paton 
Street, Huddersfield Street, and Croft Street, returning by 
the Abbotsford Road and Church Street, Elm Row, Lawyer's 
Brae, Bank Street, High Street, Island Street, Union Street, 
and Roxburgh Street to Gala Park by the Windy Knowe 
Road. By the time the rear of the east-end section of the 
procession had left the Market Place, the contingent from the 
west end had arrived and continued their march, the two sections 
being now united in one body. When the van halted in Gala Park 



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142 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

at a spot near to where the Burgh School now stands, the rear of 
the procession was still in Bank Street, it being computed that 
not fewer than 3,400 persons took part in it. In the park 
a platform had been erected, where the Provost, Magistrates 
and Town Council, along with the honorary secretary, James 
Small, banker; and William Forsyth, Cobden Hotel, Glasgow, 
took up their position. As soon as the rear of the procession 
had reached the platform, the proceedings were commenced by 
the Choral Union giving ^* Hail to the Chief;" after which the 
Provost introduced Mr Forsyth, who delivered an eloquent 
address appropriate to the occasion, which was listened to with 
rapt attention. At the conclusion. Councillor Adam Thomson 
proposed a vote of thanks to Mr Forsyth for the brilliant tribute 
he had paid to the memory of Sir Walter Scott, which, he said, he 
had all the more pleasure in doing as Mr Forsyth was a towns- 
man, who, though his presence was no longer with them, took a 
warm and hearty interest in all that pertained to Galashiels. 
This closed the more formal part of the proceedings, and the 
various bands thereafter played dance music alternately, the 
younger portion of the gathering footing it on the green sward 
under the umbrageous foliage 'of the ancestral oaks. Athletic 
games were also indulged in, and others found pleasure in 
watching the brilliant spectacle with its motion and colouring, 
upwards of 7000 people being present. In the evening there 
was a great gathering in the Public Hall, at which Provost 
Hall presided, the speakers being G. O. Trevelyan, M.P. for the 
Border Burghs, and Henry Inglis of Torsonce. 

1872 The water supply question again occupied public attention 
in 1872. There were then twenty-two public and 117 private 
wells. Of these 112 were found to be good and twenty-three 
bad; ninety-five were regular in the supply, forty irregular, 
and four were dry; while thirty families were supplied by the 
existing water supply. 

1873 In the following year Mr Leslie presented a report contain- 
ing the result of his investigation into the various available 
sources of supply. The first was from Lugate, and the second 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 143 

from Caddon; both by gravitation. The third was a pump- 
ing scheme from Torwoodlee Haugh, a fourth from the haugh 
on Caddon below Clovenfords; while a fifth was from the Tweed 
at Boldside, also by pumping. The cost of the Caddon scheme 
was estimated at ;(^32,4oo ; Lugate, ;^42,i5o; Torwoodlee 
Haugh, pumping by water power, ;(^2 1,800; by steam power, 
;(^32,40o, including maintenance capitalised. Pumping scheme 
by steam power from Clovenfords, jCsSj^oo; and from Tweed at 
Boldside, also by steam power, jC^iySOO. It was discovered that 
the supply from Torwoodlee Haugh was insufficient, and the 
idea was abandoned. A poll was again taken between the 
the Caddon and Lugate schemes, when 239 voted for Lugate, 
244 for Caddon, and 986 against both. 

In consequence of the firm with which Provost Hall was 
connected securing the contract for erecting the Public Library, 
he resigned his position in the Town Council, and Councillor 
William Laidlaw, of the firm of Laidlaw & Fairgrieve, yarn- 
spinners, was elected to fill the office of Provost. 

During the course of the year the following letter was 
received by the Town Clerk, and laid before a meeting of Local 
Authority: — 

"Board of Supervision, Edinburgh, 14M Nov,f 1873. 

Sir, — I am directed by the Board of Supervision to inform the Local 
Authority of Galashiels that the Board cannot incur the responsibility in 
permitting any further delay in providing a proper supply of wholesome water 
for the domestic use of the inhabitants, and to intimate that, if at the end of 
one month from this date, the Local Authority have- not taken the necessary 
steps for the introduction of water, it will be the duty of the Board to adopt 
such legal procedure as the statute authorises in order to compel them to do 
so. The Board would regret the necessity of such a step on their part, but 
they are apprehensive that they have already shown too much forbearance in 
this matter. 

I am also to point out that this is not a question which can be disposed of 
by the votes of the majority of ratepayers, but it is a statutory duty which the 
Local Authority are bound to discharge. 

John S. Skelton, Secy. 
Robert Stewart, Esq., 

Clerk to the Police Commissioners of Galashiels^ 



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144 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

At the next meeting it was carried by the casting vote of the 

chairman **that the Local Authority proceed to fix on a scheme 

and prepare a bill to Parliament for a water supply." As no 

notice had been taken of the letter from the Board of Super- 

1874 vision, another communication was received in 1874 threatening 

an action at law if their instructions were not at once attended to. 

It was agreed to appoint a committee to report on the best 

available source and cheapest method of bringing water into the 

burgh, but as none of the Local Authority would consent to act 

on this committee, nothing further was done in the matter. A 

i public meeting was held at which it was moved **That the rate- 

payers support the Local Authority," but, on a show of hands 

I being taken, only twenty-five were held up in support of the 

I proposal. Shortly afterwards, Dr Littlejohn, Edinburgh, was 

sent by the Board of Supervision to take samples of the water 

used for domestic purposes. 

At this juncture a prospectus was issued by a company call- 
ing itself ''The Galashiels Water Company," who offered to 
introduce a supply of water from Lugate. A rival company 
also started, who intended to utilise the Caddon. The Gala- 
shiels Water Company proposed to raise a capital of ;(^30,ooo in 
6000 shares of jCs each. The scheme was intended to provide 
forty gallons per day for a population of 15,000, and the maxi- 
mum rate was not to exceed is 3d per £ on the rental. Shops 
separate from dwelling-houses were to be assessed at 3d per jCj 
and for trade purposes it was proposed to charge 6d per thousand 
gallons, none to be assessed but those using the water. In con- 
sequence of the action of these private companies, another ballot 
was taken on the question, the result being that 220 voted for the 
introduction of water, while 416 were opposed to it. 

Public feeling ran high on the question, and at the next 
election the candidates in favour of the introduction of water were 
at the bottom of the poll. In these circumstances the Board of 
Supervision raised an action in the Court of Session, and this at 
once brought the Local Authority to a sense of their duty. They 
now requested the Board to stay proceedings for twelve months. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 145 

pledging themselves in that time to prepare a suitable water 
scheme. The bill of the ''Galashiels Water Company** was 
withdrawn, and a plebiscite was taken on the question, whether 
to introduce the water under a private bill or the Public Health 
Act. It was decided by 467 votes against 158 to proceed under 
a private Act. 

In consequence of the police receiving instructions to 

1875 extinguish the gas lamps of the burgh in 1875, they resigned in 
a body, rather than perform this duty. At that time the force 
consisted of a superintendent, sergeant, and six constables. 
Before their places were filled up, a month had elapsed. As 
an effect of this affair, the force was reported inefficient, and 
the Government grant, amounting to £y>Oj was withheld. On 
representations being made to the Home Officej the case was 
reconsidered, and the grant was paid. 

Provost Laidlaw retired in 1875, and Ex- Provost John 
Hall having offered himself as a candidate for the Town 
Council, was returned at the top of the poll, and elected Provost 
for the second time. 

1876 In the month of November, 1876, the contract for the con- 
struction of the water-works was intrusted to James Young, 
of Roslin; and in January, 1877, the ceremony of cutting the 
first sod was performed by Mrs Hall. A dinner took place 
in the Public Hall in honour of the occasion, and was attended by 
about seventy gentlemen. The water was brought into the 
town in 1879, at a total cost of about ;£^52,ooo, there being no 
public demonstration to celebrate the event. 

For a considerable time the meetings of the Town 
Council had degenerated into mere squabbling amongst the 
members, which provoked the ridicule of all who took any 
interest in municipal affairs. The transaction of business 
appeared to be the last thing that some of the Councillors 
thought about. The gratification of personal animosity, fault- 
finding with those who did the work, and petty carping on 

J 



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146 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

every opportunity were the order of the day. This ultimately 
became unendurable, and self-respecting members of the 
Council preferred to absent themselves from the meetings 
or to retire altogether rather than submit to the annoyance and 
abuse to which they were subjected. The singularity of this 
state of matters was that those who were mainly responsible for 
denouncing and obstructing measures tending to benefit the 
community posed as the friends of progress and reform in all 
directions. The public at length grew tired of their tactics, and 
took the earliest opportunity to relegate them to the position 
from which they ought never to have emerged. 

In 1876 the Galashiels Municipal Extension Act received the 
Royal assent, when a re-arrangement of the duties of the various 
officials was rendered necessary. Robert Stewart was re-elected 
Town Clerk, the Superintendent of Police was relieved from 
the duties of Inspector of Works and Cleaning, the offices of 
Collector and Treasurer were abolished, and a Chamberlain 
appointed. A Master of Works was engaged, whose duties 
comprised Surveyor of Roads and Streets, Water Works 
Manager, Surveyor of Works, Inspector of Cleaning, and 
Sanitary Inspector. In 1893, the Chief Constable was appointed 
to this latter office. The town was now divided into five wards, 
the number of electors entitled to vote in Parliamentary elections 
being 1538. There were altogether 1859 voters, the remaining 
321 were females and those only qualified to vote in Municipal 
elections, on account of residing beyond the Burgh boundaries. 

When the railway between Edinburgh and Galashiels was 
formed, the road to Melrose was intersected by a level-crossing, 
situated a short distance above the station. For many years 
this had been a constant source of annoyance and danger to all 
requiring to cross the line, and on one occasion a fatal 
accident occurred. A public meeting was held, and a committee 
was appointed to request the Railway Company to erect a 
bridge over the railway in place of the objectionable crossing. 
The Company undertook to make the alteration at an esti- 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 147 

mated cost of ;^4,ooo, provided the town became good for 
any outside damage. On the 7th October, 1878, the new bridge 
was formally taken over by the Corporation and declared open 
for traffic. The probable cost was considerably exceeded, as it 
cost the Railway Company ;(^5,ooo. The total outlay falling 
upon the ratepayers amounted to about jC^oOj which was re- 
quired for the purchase of ground for the approaches. 



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CHAPTER XX. 

AT one time Melrose Lammas Fair was the most extensive 
market for lambs in the south of Scotland, and was 
held on the western slope of Eildon Hills, near to 
where the Asylum is now erected. For days previous to the sale, 
the roads in every direction were occupied with flocks on their 
way to the hill, upon which, the night before the fair, as many as 
100,000 lambs might have been seen, attended by the shepherds 
and their watchful collies. Owing to the introduction of sales by 
auction, the market was gradually transferred to the sale rings 
at St Boswells, and in 1879 it Anally ceased to exist. 

For a long period Lammas Fair had been one of the great 
events of the year, where old acquaintances were wont to meet, 
and, '^ower a bottle o' yill,'' the days o' langsyne were recalled, 
and old friendships renewed amongst those who had been 
*'auld neebors,*' but whose opportunities for meeting and 
spending a holiday together did not often occur. 

The Fair was held about the 12th of August. All the 
factories in Galashiels closed at mid-day, and, early in the after- 
noon, hundreds of young people of both sexes were to be seen 
wending their way to the great centre of attraction. Long 
before the Eildons were reached, the ear was greeted with a 
perfect babel of sounds. Shows of every description were there, 
each one rejoicing in a band of some sort, in which the big drum 
generally predominated. At intervals, the glib-tongued show- 
men harangued the gaping crowd, earnestly advising them not 
to loose the opportunity of inspecting some fat lady, living 
skeleton, dwarf, or other freak of nature. 

Judging from the discordant sounds that met the ear at 
every turn, it appeared as if nearly all the strolling musicians in 
Scotland were present. Fiddlers, blind and otherwise, organ- 
grinders, bagpipers, clarionet players, and performers on the 

148 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 149 

tin whistle abounded. Hat in hand, and, in many cases, minus 
the normal quantity of arms or legs, leather-lunged ballad- 
singers, with stentorian voices heard high above the surrounding 
din, chanted "Flora Macdonald,'' or "The gallant Forty-twa 
man '' with a vigour and persistence that at least deserved, if it 
did not always command, success. 

Here also were to be seen those philanthropists who 
apparently dropped half sovereigns into purses, and sold 
them for half-a-crown, the disappointed dupes perhaps finding 
only a few coppers. Nimble-fingered adepts at the wheel-of- 
fortune, three-card trick, thimbles and pea, and prick the garter, 
busily plied their calling wherever they could escape the 
watchful eye of the police, who were usually in force on the 
ground. The tinkers also had a busy time, cantering to and fro 
on their sorry hacks on the chance of a "swap," or possibly 
attracting the notice of some purchaser. 

Along one side of the Fair ground stood a long row of tents, 
furnished with tables and forms, each one having its owner's 
name hung out in front, which were generally filled with noisy 
worshippers of Bacchus. Occasionally some stalwart shepherd, 
who had imbibed not wisely but too well, might be seen 
with staff in one hand and plaid in the other, performing a horn- 
pipe with a vigour that a dancing Dervish might have envied, 
his blushing sweetheart vainly endeavouring to prevail upon him 
to behave himself. 

On the other side were the "krames,** loaded with con- 
fections of every sort, the attendant owners, with practised tongues, 
cajoling the lads as they passed to and fro with their charmers 
hanging on their arms. Rapidly the gingerbread was transferred 
to the bags or handkerchiefs of the fair ones by their admirers, 
who in return had the honour of a "swagger'' through the Fair. 
The popularity of the females could always be fairly guaged 
from the amount of spoil they carried from the field. 

As the afternoon waned, those having some distance to 
travel made preparations for setting their faces homeward. Many 
a pugilistic encounter took place among the gallant swains 



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ISO HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

for the honour of escorting some rustic beauty, who, in many 
cases, stood quietly by awaiting the result, then gaily proceeded 
on her way in the company of the victor. 

When the gloaming fell, fond couples were to be seen in every 
direction leaving the fast-decreasing crowd which still peram- 
bulated the ground, the female portion, of course, being anxious 
to secure some swain to accompany them home. It was not 
unusual for a gallant Galashiels weaver to offer his services 
as escort to some pretty face, finding to his dismay that, before 
he had accomplished his self-imposed task, he was well on 
for the head-waters of the Ettrick or Yarrow, Gala or Leader, 
ten or twelve miles from home, in the small hours of the 
following morning. 

1 88 1 In 1 88 1 the movement in connection with the formation of 
the Public Park originated in consequence of the following letter 
being read at a meeting of the Corporation, — 

'^ Galashiels, 14M September^ 1881. 

Dear Sir, — ^The Galashiels Cricket Club being now in the course of 
providing a field for their own use, and having resigned the liberty and 
privilege they have hitherto had of using the cricket ground in the Eastlands, 
and the responsibility for and the care thereof, Mr Scott of Gala has it in his 
contemplation to offer to put that ground under the care of the Corporation to 
be used for similar purposes with those to which it is at present used, subject 
to such conditions as he shall specify. Before making any formal offer, 
however, he will be glad to know whether the Corporation will be willing to 
accept the control and the regulation of the ground, and the responsibility of 
keeping it in good order. 

I shall feel obliged, therefore, if you will ascertain this and let me hear 
from you. I may add that Mr Scott proposes to make a slight alteration of 
the line of the north fence, which will improve the ground by making it more 
rectangular and adding a little to it 

I am, Yours faithfully. 

Provost Hall. James Stalker." 

1882 The Corporation agreed to acquire the ground on Mr Scott's 
conditions, and in 1882 extra ground was added to the original 
portion. In order to provide means to fence and lay it out, a 
sum of ;^I286 was subscribed. Amongst the subscriptions 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 151 

were one of ;(^500, seven for ;^ioo each, one jCsOj and 
smaller contributions made up the amount. The expenditure 
amounted to ;(^I240, which left a balance in favour of the Park 
account of £4^' 

The need for a Public Park had become clamant; as the 
town extended, all the open spaces were built upon, where 
formerly the children found a play ground. As a striking 
instance of its growth. Gala Park furnishes a noteworthy 
example. At the time of the Scott centenary in 1871, this 
pleasant demesne was ornamented with trees, where cows had 
excellent pasture. When this portion of the estate was opened 
up, feus were quickly taken, and the first house was erected in 
1875. So rapid was the progress, that in 1882 the new district 
boasted of a population of 3,000, all accommodated in good 
substantial houses. Nor were the erections confined to dwelling- 
houses, there being an Established, Free, and United Presby- 
terian Church, also the Public Library and the Volunteer, 
Masonic, and Good Templar Halls, beside the fine range of 
buildings occupied as the Burgh School, where, at that date, 
accommodation was provided for 900 children. 

During the progress of the building operations in Gala Park 
in 1878, a discovery was made of an ancient cist, containing 
a human skeleton. It was unearthed in a knoll of no great 
height which was styled the ** Aiken Knock,'* situated to the 
east of Roxburgh Place, upon what is now garden-ground. 
The cist was about a foot and a half below the surface, being 
composed of flat stones set on edge, and covered with a larger 
slab. A dark-coloured dust and a few bones were at first 
observed, and, on further investigation, a small human skeleton 
was disclosed, but no implements or relics of any kind were 
found. 

1884 Great demonstrations were held all over the country in 1884 

in support of the bill for the equalisation of the burgh and 
county franchise, and a contemporary newspaper thus describes 
the event in Galashiels^ — 



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152 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

** A more captivating procession was never seen in the Border country, 
and for the variety of its component parts, the beauty and value of its 
devices, the richness of its flags and banners, the originality of the 
emblems, the novelty of many of the models of handicraft, and the shrewdness 
of the mottoes and expressions of opinion, have not been excelled on 
any similar occasion in any other part of the Kingdom.*' 

About 4,500 people took part in the procession, the town 
was gaily decorated for the occasion, and deputations were 
present from every town and village within twenty miles. The 
procession was formed on the unfeued ground in Gala Park, and, 
accompanied by nine bands, marched through the town to the 
Public Park, where two platforms had been erected for the 
various speakers. 

1885 On the 17th January, 1885, a supper party of a unique kind 

met in the Public Hall. The company numbered 120, and con- 
sisted of two classes, — natives of the town over forty-five years of 
age, and incomers resident for the same period. Seated at two 
tables along the hall, and one across at the chairman's end of 
the room, there was something striking and venerable in the 
aspect of the company. It embraced all ranks and professions 
of the community. Three octogenarians were present, and two 
between seventy and eighty, thirty-two between sixty and seventy, 
forty between fifty and sixty, the remainder being over forty-five 
and under fifty. Selkirk, Earlston, Stow, Jedburgh, Walker- 
burn, and Hawick were represented. Adam Cochrane of Fernie- 
knowe occupied the chair, and the croupiers were William 
Sime, manufacturer, and Thomas Kennedy, weaver. The 
average age of the company was fifty-five, and the united ages 
amounted to 6629 years. 

1887 On June 21st, 1887, the Jubilee of Queen Victoria was 

celebrated in the town. In the evening a thanksgiving service 
was conducted in St Paul's Church by the ministers of the 
various denominations. The Provost, Magistrates, and Town 
Council walked in procession to the church, escorted by the 
burgh police. The Volunteers attended the service, accompanied 



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Provost Laidlaw Provost Hall 

Provost Dickson 
Provost Brown Provost Dun 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 153 

by their band, and the Boys' Brigades belonging to the Free and 
Parish Churches were also present. 

On the summits of the hills bonfires had been prepared, and, 
as darkness approached, numbers were attracted to the top of 
Meigle Hill. The central peak of the Eildons was the first to 
show the ruddy glare, and soon no fewer than sixty fires could 
be counted. All round, on the Cheviots, the hills in Liddesdale 
and Teviotdale, the Pentlands and the Lammermoors, the 
signals could be discerned; while, from the nearer heights, 
rockets could be observed shooting up into the sky, To those 
conversant with Border history the sight vividly realized the 
scene in 1804, when the lighted beacons summoned the Borderers , 

to arise in defence of their fatherland. ] 

I 
I 

1888 In 1888 Provost Hall resigned, and Councillor Andrew ', 

Brown, of the firm of William Brown & Sons, was elected his 
successor. The following year the Provost was presented with 
a chain and badge of office, and, in 1890, the ladies belonging 
to the town presented him with suitable robes. 

The question of a bridge across the Gala near its junction 

1890 with the Tweed arose in 1890. A sum of ;(^320 had been sub- 
scribed to carry out this improvement, and the Corporation 
was approached to induce them to take up the work. They 
agreed to contribute £126 towards the cost of the undertaking 
and maintain the approaches to the bridge, subject to the con- 
dition imposed by the Gas Company, that the solum remain 
their property. 

1891 In 1 891 occurred a great flood in the Gala which destroyed 
a large amount of property along its banks. The wooden foot- 
bridges at Buckholm Mill, Comelybank Mill, and Abbots Mill 
were swept away, and the mason work at the new bridge at 
Galafoot was utterly destroyed, the Gala for the time breaking 
into what is said to have been its old course, across the Cellarer's 
Haugh, and joining the Tweed at Carrow-weel. Several railway 
bridges between Galashiels and Heriot were seriously damaged,^ 



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154 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

causing a stoppage of traffic by the Waverley route for some 
days. The water came on to the road at King Street, and made 
its way down Island Street and High Street, where it diverged 
into Sime Place and went into its proper channel by the end of 
the bridge. One man was drowned while engaged in drag- 
ging trees from the water, near the bridge over Gala at the 
junction of the Selkirk railway, his body being recovered at 
Newstead several days afterwards. 

This year a much-needed improvement at the old church- 
yard was carried into effect, principally through the exertions 
of Provost Brown. The unsightly collection of stunted fir trees 
which occupied the unused ground at the east end of the 
place of burial was removed, and a wall and gateway erected. 
The old ruinous wall along the Abbotsford Road was taken 
down and rebuilt, and a line of shrubbery planted between the 
churchyard and the road. 

With the exception of the burial-ground in Darling's Haugh, 
this churchyard was the only place of sepulchre in the town 
till 1840, and it contains nearly all the earlier ministers, lawyers, 
manufacturers, and others who founded Galashiels. There are 
but few ancient tombstones extant, the oldest being that in the 
aisle belonging to the Gala family, which records the virtues of 
Hugh Scott, the first of that name in the barony. The inscrip- 
tion is in Latin, of which the following is a translation: — 

*' Here lies an illustrious man, Captain Hugh Scott, Laird of Gallosheiles, 
famous for his valor, distinguished for singular piety and charity, who acted 
vigorously in propagating the reformed religion in England, until, at length, 
compelled by severe illness to return to his country with loss to the Church 
and state, (a dear wife, friends, and ten children of the best promise, surviving), 
the sixth week from his return he fell asleep most peacefully in Christ, ist 
September, 1644. He lived blamelessly, and in this appointed tomb awaits 
the coming of the Lord." 

The next oldest memorial is a tablet built into the wall, 
also within the aisle, commemorating the memory of the Rev. 
Mark Duncan, minister of the parish in 165 1; his epitaph is 
given elsewhere, but his place of burial is unknown. The oldest 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 155 

decipherable stone in the churchyard measures about two feet 
high by fifteen inches wide, and bears the following inscription, 
surmounted by a thistle, — 

HERE LYE THE 
BODIES OF ADA 
M . ADAM . ROB 
ERT . lANET. 
ISOBEL . AND 
lEAN YOUNGS. 
ANNO DOM 
1697 

On the top of the stone is inscribed *' Walter Young, dyed 
November 23, 1728, aged 18 years.*' The back of the stone is also 
covered with rude sculpture, consisting of the usual emblems of 
mortality and other figures, which denotes that this stone 
marks the family burial-ground of Robert Young, one of the 
old ** bedells'* in connection with the Parish Church. 

The following inscription appears on the tombstone of one 
who had followed the occupation of fuller, or ** walker," as they 
were then termed, — 

HERE . LYES . AND 
REW . PATERSON . WAL 
KER . IN . GALASHIELS . WHO 
DIED . OCTOBR . 1712 . AGED 
70 YEARS. ISOBEL WILSON 
HIS . SPOUSE . AGED . 62 
GEORGE . PATERSON . AGED 
75 . HILUN . HWNTER 
HIS SPOUSE AGED 63 

Another small stone bears the following inscription, — 

HERE LYS 
lOHN MABON 
WHO DIED ON THE 17 OF 
OCT IN THE YEAR OF GOD 
1704 AGED 75 



156 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

On the back of this stone is a sculptured representation of two 
horse shoes with a hammer between them, evidently denoting 
that the occupant of the tomb had been a blacksmith. 

Another stone, commemorating the memory of one of the 
Darlings of Appletreeleaves, bears, — 

HERE . LYS INTER 

ED . THE . BODY . OF . MR 
ANDREW DARLING PORTION 
ER . OF . APPLETREELEAVES 
AND . SOMETIME . MINISTER 
OF . STITCHiLL . WHO . DIED 
THE 3 DAY OF AGWST AND 
YEAR . OF . GOD . 1735 • AGED 
86 YEARS. HERE ALSO LYS 
THE BODY OF AGNES INGLIS 
HIS . SPOUSE . WHO . DIED 
25 . DAY . OF . MARCH . 17^1 
AGED 63 YEARS 

This is apparently the burial-place of that divine mentioned 
in the history of the Parish Church, who is recorded as ** having 
preached against the profane and superstitious custom of playing 
football on Fastrines even.'' 

It was customary to denote the trade or calling of the 
individual to whose memory the tombstone was erected by the 
carved representation of some article used in his business. 
A stone, dated 1739, erected over the grave of Robert Aimers, 
millwright, bears a representation of a cogged wheel. On another 
stone, dated 1759, to the memory of Adam Paterson, clothier, 
appear the shears used in the early days of the woollen 
trade for cropping the cloth. A third has a representation 
of a two-handed knife, such as is used by leather-dressers, 
the occupant of the tomb, in all probability, belonging to that 
handicraft. 

A large stone, erected to the memory of the Parks of Foul- 
shiels, bears, — 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 157 

SACRED 

TO THE MEMORY OF 

MUNGO PARK, 

The celebrated African Traveller, 

Who perished in the interior of Africa 

in 1805. Aged 35. 

ALSO TO 

ALICE ANDERSON, 

His Wife, who died at Edinburgfh 

in 1840. Aged 59. 

ALSO 

Their eldest Son, 

MUNGO, 

Assist. Surgeon, E.J.C.S., 

Who died at Trinchinopoly, Madras, 

in 1823. Aged 23. 

AND 

THOMAS, 

Their second Son, 
of the R.N., who died in Africa, 1827, aged 24. 

When a grave was being dug in an unused portion of the 
churchyard, which was acquired about 1838, a stone cist, similar 
to that found in Gala Park in 1878, was unearthed at a depth 
of four feet from the surface. In this instance, an urn containing 
bones was found, but, unfortunately, was damaged by the sexton. 
The cist measured two and a half feet long and one foot eight 
inches wide. The urn was seven inches in diameter at the mouth, 
and was ornamented with zig-zag lines. 

In addition to th^ old churchyard, the Eastlands Cemetery, 
and the burying-ground in connection with St Peter*s 
Episcopal Church, the only other available place of burial 
in the town was that of Ladhope, which was acquired 
in 1840 by the trustees of Ladhope Chapel. In 1857 an 
addition was made to the west end, which was subsequently 
taken over by the Melrose Parochial Board. 

An old place of burial exists between High Street and 
Bridge Street, immediately behind the East United Presbyterian 
Church. In some of the earlier feu-charters in connection with 
that locality the right of sepulchre is conveyed to the feuar. 
The place has been closed for many years, the last recorded 
interment being that of Robert Dickson, skinner. A ponderous 



158 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

thruch-stone covers the grave, the date being 13th July, 18 19. 
At one time a tombstone is said to have existed, inscribed 
as follows, — ^^ Here lies Hugh Darling, laird, owner, and 
proprietor of this haugh, died ist April, 171 7, aged 78 years." 
Another, which commemorated the memory of a child, was 
formerly in existence, but has now disappeared. Hitherto, it 
had been considered that these interments included all that 
had taken place, but recent excavations for building purposes 
in the neighbourhood have revealed the presence of portions of 
tombstones, which, it may be presumed, were erected in the 
locality. One of these was in a fragmentary condition, such of 
• the inscription as was decipherable being, — ^^Stoddart . . . 
late tenant in . . . his age . . . '' A second stone, in 
fairly good condition bears, ^* James Riddell, died 30th Novem- 
ber, 1804, aged 84 years. Alison Kyle, his wife, died . . . 
also two of their children, John and Elizabeth.'' A third stone 
was brought to light, but the inscription was wanting. It was 
highly ornamented, having a rope moulding round it and the 
words Momento Mori^ with the emblems of mortality sculptured 
upon the upper part of the stone. 

The widening of Channel Street now commenced to take a 
practical shape, and, in 1891, several proprietors in the street 
presented the area of ground in front of their respective pro- 
perties to the town. Others, however, requested such an 
amount of compensation as involved the Corporation in heavy 
legal expenses, and the prospects of having the work completed 
at a reasonable cost are, at the present, extremely remote. 

1893 In 1893 a re-arrangement of the wards took place. This was 
rendered desirable in consequence of the growth of the town, 
especially in Gala Park district, causing too great a discrep- 
ancy in the number of voters in the various wards. 

1894 In 1894 Provost Brown retired, and Councillor James 
Dickson, of the firm of Arthur Dickson & Co., was elected to 
the office. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 159 

Owing to the establishment of Parish Councils, the last 
meeting of the Parochial Board took place on the 8th February, 

1895 1895. At the close of the business, the chairman, Andrew 
H. Herbertson, stated that in 1841 the rental of the parish of 
Galashiels was ;^i3,4i9, the amount of assessment raised at 
that time being jCig$. In 1895 the valuation had risen to 
;^74,794, and the assessment for Poor Law purposes, education, 
&c., amounted to ;^6,88o, the number of poor chargeable on the 
parish being 206, with ninety dependents. 

1896 In 1896 the centenary of the death of Robert Burns was 
observed in the burgh by means of a public demonstration, 
under the auspices of the Provost, Magistrates, and Town 
Council. A procession marched through the town to the Public 
Park, where various speakers addressed the gathering. A choir 
of 150 voices rendered a selection of Burns' songs, and the 
proceedings terminated by the company singing ^*Auld Lang 
Syne.*' As the people were leaving the park, a collection was 
taken for the purpose of procuring a wreath to be laid on the 
grave of the poet, which was accompanied with a card bearing 
''With admiration, love, and gratitude, from the ' Braw, braw, 
lads.' " 

In taking the census previous to 1851, no distinction was 
made between the inhabitants of the town and those who dwelt 
in the landward portion of the parishes in which it is situated. 
Consequently, so far as official figures are concerned, no record 
exists to show the growth of the population previous to the 
above date. On several occasions during the first half of the 
present century a census was taken by residents, but, owing to 
the enumeration being confined to that portion of the town with- 
in the parish of Galashiels, the results are of no practical value. 

The earliest record of the number of inhabitants m the 
village dates from 1662, when the Parish Church was transferred 
from Boldside to Galashiels. At that time the population 
amounted to over 400, which furnished one of the reasons for the 
tra:nsference of the Church, 



i6o 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



In 163 1 the Rev. Nathaniel Paterson states in the new 
statistical account that there were 2209 inhabitants in the town, 
of whom 1079 belonged to the parish of Melrose; of these, 762 
resided in Darling's Haugh, and 317 in Buckholmside. 

In 185 1 the figures relating to the population of the town 
and parish are given separately, the official record for the town 
being as follows, — 











No. of females 


Year. 


Males. 


Females. 


Totals. 


in excess of males. 


1851 


291 1 


3007 


5918 


96 


1861 


3079 


3354 


6433 


275 


1871 


4953 


5359 


10,312 


406 


1881 


7250 


8080 


15.330 


830 


1891 


7997 


9370 


17.367 


1373 



The estimated population in 1896 was 18,136. 

Such is the simple and uneventful record of the origin and 
progress of Galashiels since that time when its site was occupied 
by the rude ^^shiels'' erected by the shepherds who tended the 
Royal flocks on the banks of the Gala. 

Its history carries one back to the time when its owners, the 
Earls of Douglas, rivalled Royalty, when Ettrick Forest was 
a Royal hunting ground and the ^^ Hunter's Ha''' sheltered 
Scotland's kings; the adjoining village being the abode of the 
retainers of the Hoppringles of ^' Galowayscheelis." 

Since these far distant days that dimly loom through the 
mist of centuries, the spirit of change has been at work, and 
even the face of nature now wears a diff'erent aspect. The old 
village has disappeared, and fertile fields now environ the busy 
haunts of men, where once the wild deer roamed in the forest 
glades. Then, no sound awoke the echoes but the baying of 
the hounds or the joyous shouts of the hunters as they pursued 
their sylvan sport amid the tangled recesses of the merry green- 
wood. Like the baseless fabric of a vision, they have all 
vanished; their memory is forgotten, save for a few place-names 
which tradition affirms had their origin in connection with the 
sport and pastime of a bye-gone age. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The stirringf annals of the Borderland are silent regar 
the part played by the forefathers of the hamlet in the rude 
of Border feud and foray. Then the hands of the villagers ^ 
more accustomed to wield the tough Border spear than 
prosaic, if more useful, 'May and shuttle,'' so familiar to t 
successors. 

No record remains to tell how they defended their hoi 
against hostile invasion, or, perchance, joined in the midni 
raid, driving home in triumph the **nolt beasts" harried fr 
their auld enemies of England. 

The once obscure hamlet has become a town, the produ 
of which are known over the civilised world. The primit 
appliances of its early days have developed into well-appoini 
factories, where the men and women of to-day obtain the mea 
of subsistence in return for their labour. 

When Queen Victoria ascended the throne, the populati 
of the town did not exceed one-sixth of what it is now, yet ev 
this wonderful progress does not represent the whole facts of t 
case. For many years it has been the cause of expansion els 
where. Its manufacturers and operatives have migrated 
Selkirk, Walkerburn, Innerleithen, Peebles, and other towi 
where the woollen industry is carried on. Wherever the Englis 
language is spoken, its sons are to be found worthily maintainin 
the credit of their native town. Had Galashiels been favoure 
with such facilities for the erection of public works as exist i 
many localities, the population to-day might have been nearl 
doubled. 

Hitherto the expansion of the woollen industry has been th 
strength of the town, but under modern conditions it may als( 
prove its weakness. While trade flourished, the town extender 
by leaps and bounds. This extraordinary growth has nov 
ceased, and whether it will ever again attain to its former vigoui 
appears at the present time to be extrentely doubtful. The con- 
ditions under which its staple trade was carried on are no\\ 
altered, and in place of enjoying a practical monopoly in the 
production of tweeds, as was formerly the case, manufacturers 

K 



l62 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



have to compete against the leading nations of the world, 
besides being heavily handicapped by hostile and prohibitive 
tariffs. 

However discouraging the prospects of the town may 
be in the meantime, the energy of its manufacturers is not yet 
exhausted, and, with the capital and appliances at their command, 
seconded by the skill and hearty co-operation of their employees, 
they would prove themselves degenerate sons of worthy sires 
should they fail to maintain the pre-eminence of Galashiels as 
a manufacturing centre against all comers. Upon this com- 
bination depends the future of the town, the history of which, 
even in its palmy days, has not been a record of unalloyed 
success. Seasons of gloom and depression have been experi- 
enced, and at intervals pinching poverty has been no stranger in 
the community, yet, on the whole, prosperity has largely pre- 
dominated. While the poor are always present, that squalid 
poverty and wretchedness, misery and crime, so prevalent else- 
where, are scarcely known. Amid all the fluctuations of trade 
that have occurred since Galashiels became the principal seat 
of the tweed trade in Scotland, its inhabitants have enjoyed a 
large measure of prosperity and comfort, and, compared with the 
lot of many of their fellow-men under similar conditions, have 
had ample reason to acknowledge that their lines have fallen in 
pleasant places. 



SECTION II.— ECCLESIASTICAL. 



^.i^'^Mk^t..:^ 



CHAPTER I. 

Galashiels Parish Church. 

WHILE the name Galashiels offers no difficulty to 
etymologists, the early history of the parish to which 
it has been applied for two hundred and seventy-four 
years is involved in obscurity. Owing to the want of uniformity 
in spelling, the parish has been known as Lyndon, Lynden, 
Lyndein, Lindin, Lindene, Lindein, Linden, &c. The name is 
derived from the British Lyn^ signifying a river pool, and the 
Anglo-Saxon DenCy a valley. Under one or other of the above 
names, the parish had been known for at least three hundred 
and fifty years. 

The Kirk of Lindean belonged to the Abbey of Kelso, 
which was founded by David L in 1128, on the removal thereto 
of the monks who had been settled at Selkirk in 11 13. Kelso 
was situated in the Diocese of Glasgow, but had a dispensation 
exempting its abbot from all Episcopal jurisdiction; the 
monks could take their ordination and other sacraments from 
any Bishop in Scotland, and also from Cumberland. Whether 
Lindean Kirk was erected during the time the monks were at 
Selkirk or Kelso is unknown, but in all probability it was 
built after the transference took place. The parish was what 
was called a vicarage. The monks had the right to the teinds, 
and employed a vicar to discharge the duties. 

Before the Reformation, parishes were erected for purely 
ecclesiastical purposes, and had none of the obligations which 

165 



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i66 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

are now attached to what are known as civil or quoad omnia 
parishes, the jurisdiction both in erecting and uniting- these 
early parishes being exercised by the Church. 

Unfortunately, through the loss of records, the origin of 
many of the older parishes, amongst which must be classed 
Lindean, cannot now be traced. It is entered under the name of 
1275 Lyndon in Baiamund's roll, which was made up in 1275, by 
order of the Pope, for the purpose of collecting the tenth of the 
ecclesiastical benefices in Scotland for the relief of the Holy 
Land, the amount in which it was found liable being ^4. In 
the Libellus Taxationuni the rectory was valued at ;^I3, 6s 8d, 
and in the Books of Assignations, 15 74- 15 79, and the Book of 
Assumptions, 1577, the vicarage was rated at ;^40. 

1353 In 1353 Sir William Douglas, who was designated '*the 

Flower of Chivalry," was assassinated while hunting in Ettrick 
Forest, by his godson. Sir William Douglas, the first Earl of 
that name, at a place called Galsewood or Galvord. Various 
reasons are given for the perpetration of the deed. According 
to Lord Hailes, it was in revenge for the cruel murder of 
Alexander Ramsay of Dalhousie, whom Sir William starved to 
death in Hermitage^ Castle. Another reason is stated by Hume 
of Godscroft, who records that 

**The lord of Liddesdale, being at his pastime hunting in Attrick Forest, is 
beset by William, Earl of Douglas, and such as hie had ordained for that 
purpose, and there assailed, wounded and slain besides Galsewood, in the 
year 1353, upon a jealousie that the Earl had conceived of him with his lady, 
as the report goeth, for so says the old song, 

* The Countess of Douglass out of her boure she came, 
And loudly there that she did call; 
It is for the Lord of Liddesdale, 
That I let all these tears downfall/ 

The song, he continues, also declareth how shee did write her love letters to 
Liddesdale to dissuade him from that hunting. It tells likewise the manner of 
the taking his men, and his own killing at Galsewood, and how he was carried 
the first night to Lindin Kirk, a mile from Selkirk^ and was buried within the 
Abbacie of Melrosse.** 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The murdered knight was extolled as 

*' Terrible and feare-fuU in arms; meek, milde, and gentle in peace; 
scourge of England and sure buckler and wall of Scotland, whom neither 
success could make slack, nor prosperous slouthful." 

1502 The next mention of Lyndene occurs in 1502, when Ro 

Lofthouse was, on his own confession, convicted of conceal 
**paise pennies'* (Easter ofFerings) to the value of ten mei 
For this offence he was sentenced to be banished furth of S< 
land, and had to remove within forty days, under pain 
^^tinsalof hislife." 

1567 In 1567 the Kirk of Lindean was entered in the rental 

the abbacie of Kelso, along with the town and mill, wh 
yielded respectively ;^i6 and £2^ 13s 6d. From the kirk v 
drawn in kind ten chalders one boll of .victual in the foUowi 
proportions, — From the lands of Cauldschiells, four bol 
Fadounsyde, fourteen bolls; Heyndoun Toun (?) with the mail 
three chalders; Mosilie and Blyndlie, seven bolls; the Bi 
Hauch, six bolls two firlots; Ferinylie and Calfschaw, thirte 
bolls two firlots; Gallowscheillis and Boytsyde, three chaldei 
and Langreynk, one chalder four bolls. 

1586 ^^ 1586 Lindean Kirk was abandoned. For years it h; 

been crumbling with age and decay. The decrease of populatu 
in the district had made it less central, and its days as a pla 
of worship had drawn to a close. For centuries, monks ar 
curates, ministers and people had spent their hours of publ 
devotion under its humble roof. All have gone. The old rui 
only remains, haunted by the shadowy memories of the dim an 
distant past. 

** In the green bosom of the sunny hills, 
Far from the weary round of human ills, 

Where silence sleepeth. 
Where nothing breaks the still and charmed hours. 
Save whispering mountain stream that 'neath the flowers 

For ever creepeth." 

When the Kirk of Lindean fell into decay, it appears thai 
for some years afterwards no public place of worship existed 



i68 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1 59 1 in the parish. In 1591 William Ker, the vicar, with the elders 
and deacons, approached the Privy Council with a petition for 
the erection of a new church. In this application it is stated that 

**They and the maist of the parrochinaris of the said parrochin having 
convenit thameselffis at command of his Majesties utheris letters for ordour- 
taking anent the reperatioun of the said Kirk, it was found be commoun 
consent that the place quhair the said Kirk was of auld situat was very incom- 
modious for the maist parte of the sadis parrochinaris, in respect that the 
watter of Tuede seperat the said Kirk frome the maist populus part of the 
said parrochin; and thairfor it was condecendit unto that the said Kirk suld 
be transported furth of the said place quhair it presentlie standis, and ane new 
Kirk biggit apoun the north syde of Tuede at the west end of the toun of 
Boldsyde, and to be beildit of the quantitie following, viz.: — Of Ix fuitis of 
length, and the side walls thereof to be saxtine fuitis of heicht, and the 
gavallis effering thairto, and to be namit in all tyme heirefter, the Kirk of 
Lindene, as it was namit of befoir, with this provisoun, that the transporting 
of the said Kirk suld nather alter the name thairof, nor yet be hurtfull nor 
prejudiciall to the vicarage, glebe, landis and mans pertaining thairto, with 
the pertinentis appointit for the service at the said Kirk, and the auld buriall 
place to remain quhair it is presentlie. And for repairing thairof thae have 
ordanit ane sufficient dyke to be biggit aboute the same; and als it wes con- 
cludit and condiscendit unto that ane coble suld be made upoun the expensis 
of the hail parrochin to bring ouer the deid to the buriall place, and to be 
biggit and halden up perpetuallie be the haill parrochinaris as ane commoun- 
weel; for quhilk purpois thae have willinglie condiscendit to ane taxation to 
be collectit amangis thame. And, swa, now all things ar in reddines tending 
to the perfyteing and accomplissing of this werk, and thair restis nathing bot 
his Hienes authoritie to be interponit to thair proceedings in this mater." 

No opposition having been offered by the parishioners to 
this proposal, the Lords ordained that the said work 

** Be ended, perfyted and accomplissed according to the conclusion and 
ordour sett doun be the speciall and chief personis of the said parrochin." 

The exact date of the erection of the kirk at Boldside is not 
known; but, doubtless, the above deliverance had been carried 
into effect without delay. The kirk is shown on Blaeu's map of 
1608, and, notwithstanding the proviso that the name of Lindean 
was to remain for all time coming, it is stg^ted in the Presbytery 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 169 



records in 161 2, that **John Dun of Brigheugh and Andro 
Shortreed were ordered to satisfy the Kirk of Boilsyde for 
leading corn upon the Sabbath day/' 

Like Lindean, the spelling of Boldside has varied consider- 
ably, viz., — Boylside, Boilsyde, Boldsyd, Boldsidd, Boldsyid, 
Bowside, Bollside, Bolside, &c. The name is derived from the 
Cymric^/, the open side. 

In Chalmers' Caledonia it is asserted that Boldside was at 
one time a separate parish, and this statement has been repeated 
by Fullarton and Jeffrey, in the Gazetteer of Scotland and the 
History of Roxburghshire respectively. This is apparently a 
mistake, as the lands on both sides of the Tweed, including 
Boldside, were comprised within the parish of Lindean, and 
after the Reformation a reader was appointed to that church 
only. It is also evident that the foregoing extract from the 
Privy Council records regarding the change of site has entirely 
escaped the notice of the above writers on the subject. 

In the introduction to the Mofiasteryy Sir Walter Scott thus 
refers to Boldside, — 

''On the opposite bank of the Tweed might be seen the remains of ancient 
enclosures, surrounded by sycamores and ash trees of considerable size. These 
had once formed the crofts or arable ground of a village. The cottages, even 
the church which once existed there, have sunk into vestiges hardly to be traced 
without visiting the spot, the inhabitants having gradually withdrawn to the 
more prosperous town of Galashiels, which has risen into consideration, within 
two miles of the neighbourhood. Superstitious eld, however, has tenanted the 
groves with atrial beings, to supply the want of the mortal tenants who have 
deserted it. The ruined and abandoned churchyard of Boldside has been long 
believed to have b6en haunted by the fairies; and the deep broad current of the 
Tweed wheeling in moonlight round the foot of the steep bank, with the 
number of trees originally planted for shelter round the fields of the cottagers, 
but now presenting the effect of scattered and detached groves, fills up the 
idea which one would, in imagination, form a scene that Oberon and Queen 
Mab would delight to revel in." 

Without discussing the question further, Boldside may be 
left in the halo of romance with which the Great Magician has 
surrounded it. 



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170 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

In 1622 the name of the parish of Lindean was converted 
into Galashiels, and is thus described in a manuscript in the 
Advocate*s Library, Edinburgh, dated 1656, — 

**The Kirk is erected at ye toun of Gallowscheilds, ye Kirk of Lindene being 
now demolished, and ye old name of ye parish of Lindene converted into ye 
parish of Gallowscheilds. Shire Roxburgh, alias Teviotdale, Diocese of 
Glasgow, Presbytery of Selkirk, Commissariot of Peebles; Patron, Scott of 
Gallowscheilds. '' 

When the charter was granted in 1632 to James Scott of Gala 
conferring the right to the patronage of the Kirk of Lindean, 
the rights of the Earl of Roxburghe and the Sheriff of the Forest 
as titulars to the teinds, parsonage, and vicarage were expressly 
reserved. A dispute afterwards arose regarding the extent of the 
rights of the Roxburghe family, who had acquired much of the 
property which had belonged to the monks of Kelso. The 
question of the patronage arose in 17 12, and was ultimately 
settled in favour of the Scotts of Gala, who exercised the right 
up to 1874, when patronage was abolished by Act of Parliament. 
The right to the teinds of Galashiels, although raised in 1712, 
was not decided till the 3rd November, 1 749. The decision was 
in favour of the Duke of Roxburghe, who founded his claim on a 
Crown charter, of date 1607, and a charter of Novodamus in 
1687. This title was preferred to that of Scott of Gala, who 
claimed that he had acquired the right to the teinds by the Act 
of 1690, as patron of the parish. Subsequently the Gala family 
acquired this right by a disposition granted by Robert, Duke of 
Roxburghe, as titular, dated 2nd March, 1752. 

In the unprinted Acts of the General Assembly of the Kirk 
of Scotland in 1647, mention is made of a reference and Com- 
mission concerning the Kirk of Lyndean, and in the following 
year a recommendation was made to the Commission for the 
planting of kirks, to unite the adjoining lands of Sutherland, 
Sutherlandhall, &c., to Lindean, and form it into a distinct 
parish. At the same time it was recommended *^to keep in the 
interim the Kirk of Galosheills,'' but no further action appears to 
have been taken concerning the proposal. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 171 

In the article referring to the parish of Galashiels, written 
in 1833 ^y ^^^ R^v. Nathaniel Paterson for the New Statistical 
Account^ he mentions **the united parish of Galashiels and 
Lindean.'' This is a mistake, there was no parish of Galashiels 
till 1622, and what took place at that time was only the substi- 
tution of that name in place of Lindean. Another local example 
of a change of name in consequence of a change of site is 
afforded in the case of St Mary of the Lowes. So long as that 
place of worship was situated on the margin of the Loch the old 
name remained, but a change of site converted it into the kirk 
and parish of Yharrow, Vara, now Yarrow. 

The remains of the Kirk of Lindean are still extant, but in a 
sadly dilapidated condition. Within recent years the rubbish 
has been removed from the interior of the ruin, showing the walls 
to a height of three or four feet. On the outside they are level 
with the debris which has been allowed to accumulate. Inter- 
nally the ruin measures fifty-seven feet by seventeen feet, the 
doorway being near the south-west corner. A large horizontal 
tombstone, measuring nearly eighty-one inches by forty-two 
inches, which was unearthed during the course of the operations, 
has been erected against the inside of the north wall. The 
stone has a shield in the centre, with the letters W. R. above 
it. On the left side can still be deciphered **To the happie 
memory of tua honorabil personis,'* and on the right **and his 
spous Kathrene Ker.'' A copy of the inscription, taken when 
the stone was in better preservation, shows it to have been 
erected before 1620 to the memory of Andrew Ker of Lintoun and 
his wife, probably relatives of William Ker, the first Protestant 
minister in the parish. It is supposed that the Lady Margaret 
Stewart, the second wife of John Knox, was buried here. She 
became the wife of Ker of Faldonside, who figured prominently 
in the murder of David Rizzio. The interment is merely a 
matter of conjecture, no direct evidence having been adduced. 

The kirkyard appears to have been regarded as a convenient 
quarry for the district, as at the present day only three or four 
tombstones remain. About forty years ago some vandals muti- 



172 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

lated and destroyed the gravestones very much, besides carrying 
away a third of the whole number standing at that time. One 
solitary thruch-stone remains to mark the spot where Thomas 
Elliot, tenant of Oakwood Miln, and his wife are laid, the oldest 
date on the stone being 1723. Through the efforts of the Rev. 
Dr Hunter, minister of Galashiels, there is every prospect of 
steps being taken to have the rubbish cleared away and means 
adopted to preserve what still remains of the venerable ruin. 



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CHAPTER II. 

PREVIOUS to the Reformation Scotland was observant of 
the Roman Catholic religion, but, coming under the in- 
fluence of the Reformers, the effect was surprising. As if 
animated by some magical influence, the great mass of the people 
threw off* all allegiance to the Pope, along with all their old 
methods of worship, and turned to the simple letter of Scripture, 
as interpreted by the reforming preachers. Indignant at being 
so long blinded by the priesthood, whose sloth and luxury in too 
many cases were notorious, the populace attacked the monasteries 
and churches, and overthrew the altars and images. Burning with 
a zeal ever to be regretted, they did not even spare the noble build- 
ings. The Regent Mary de Guise, a devoted Catholic, strove 
in vain to stem the torrent. Obtaining troops from France, she 
maintained for a time a resistance against the Reformers, but 
they, on the other hand, received aid from England, and so the 
Reformation was accomplished. In 1560 the jurisdiction of the 
Pope was abolished, and those who persisted in celebrating the 
Mass were liable to very severe penalties. A new system was 
established, each parish had its minister elected by the people, 
or at least a reader to read the Scriptures and Common Prayers. 
The great bulk of the wealth which had been at the disposal 
of the Roman Catholic priesthood fell into the hands of the 
Crown and nobility, consequently the Presbyterian clergymen 
were poorly supported, their incomes for the first forty years 
after the Reformation being wretchedly small and irregularly 
paid. In the pathetic words of a memorial which they presented 
to Queen Mary in 1562, *' most of them led a beggar's life.'' 

The proceedings of the General Assembly in 1576 reveal the 
fact that some of the ministers were compelled to eke out their 
miserable stipends by selling ale to their parishioners. The 
question was at that time formally put *' Whether a minister or 

173 



174 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

reader may tap ale, beer, or wine, and keep ane open tavern ? '* 
to which it was answered, ^*Ane minister or reader that taps ale, 
beer, or wine, and keeps ane open tavern, should be exhorted 
by the Commissioners to keep decorum.'* 

Such was the worldly position of a number of the ministers 
in Scotland at the time when the first Protestant minister was 
appointed to the vicarage of Lindean. 

The usages of the Church in regard to the order of worship 
during the fifty years subsequent to the Reformation differ so 
materially from the modern form that a short description, as 
recorded in the Book of Common Order, may prove of interest. 

"The bell having been rung an hour before, was rung the second time at 
eight o'clock for the reader's service. The congregation then assembled, and 
for a little engaged in private devotions. The reader then took his place at 
the lectern, read the common prayers, and in some churches, the decalogue 
and creed. He then gave out portions of the Psalter, the singing of which 
was concluded by the Gloria Patria^ and next read chapters of Scripture from 
the old and new testaments, going through in order any book that was begun, 
as required by the first book of discipline. After an hour thus spent, the bell 
rang the third time, and the minister entered the pulpit and ' knelt for private 
devotion.' He then began with a 'conceived prayer' chiefly for * illumination,' 
next preached the sermon and then read one of the prayers in the Liturgy for 
all conditions of men, concluding with the Lord's prayer and the creed, after 
this there followed a psalm and the benediction " 

After the Reformation daily service was very general. In 
towns the Common Prayers, with portions of Scripture, were 
read, and even in country villages there was daily service. It was 
provided by a '^guid and godlie statute," ordaining the people 

" To reparie to thair paroch Kirkis, keep and observe the sermones on the 
Sabbath day, als weel efternone as afoirnone^ and also the sermones on the vlk 
dayes, and not depairt thairfra unto the end theirof." 

The penalty for -breaking this statute was a fine of 13s 4d 
Scots for absence on Sundays of householders or their wives, 
and 3s 4d Scots for absence on week-days, and it was decreed that 

** Everie husband and maister of houshold sal be answerabill for his wyff 
incase of her absence fra the sermones and pay the vnlaw incurrit be hir 
theirfor." 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 175 

William Ker, son of George Ker of Lintoun, the first 
Protestant minister of Lindean, was presented to the vicarage by 
James VI. on the i8th of August, 1569. In 1574 his stipend 
amounted to £3^ 6s 8d sterling. There would also be payment 
in kind, else it is difficult to understand how he could live. He 
continued in Lindean for thirty years, during the latter portion 
of which there appears to have been a coadjutor minister in the 
person of William Hog. During his term of office the Kirk of 
Lindean had fallen into decay, and a new one was erected at 
Boldside. Troublous times arose during his ministry; the King 
was intent on imposing Episcopacy upon the country, and 
William Ker was deposed on the nth of November, 1599, and 
ordered by the Presbytery to transfer the contract between him 
and William Hog to Patrick Urquhart, who succeeded him. 

William Hog, A.M., was laureated by the University of 
Edinburgh on the 12th August, 1592, and was presented to 
the vicarage of Lindean by James VI. on the nth November, 
^596 1596. In the following year he appeared as a witness to a 
bond for ;^iooo by William Cairncroce of Colmisly, as surety 
for Mary Borthwick, life renter of the lands of ^'Gallow- 
scheillis,'' and Johnne Home, her spouse, not to harm her son, 
James Pringle of Smailholm. In 1601 Kog was translated to 
Ayton, and, in 161 1, was presented by the King to the modified 
stipend of Ayton and Lamberton. On the ist July, 1606, he, 
along with forty-five others, signed the protestation against the 
introduction of Episcopacy. In June, 1609, he was a witness 
in the trial for forfeiture for high treason against Logan, son of 
Robert Logan of Restalrig, who had been accessory to the 
Gowrie conspiracy, the following being a copy of his evidence 
on that occasion, — 

" Mr William Hog, minister at Ayton, of the aige of xxx yeiris, or thairby 
mareit, deponis; that he knew weil the Laird of Rastelrig, and hes some of 
his writtis, and producit ane letter written by Rastelrig to the Laird of Ayton, 
all written with Restalrigs awin hand wryit. And having considerit the fyve 
writtis produceit be the Aduocat, declaris, that he thinkis thame lyklie to his 
wryittis, and that the samen appeiris to be verie lyk his wryitte, be the con- 
formitie of letteris and spelling." 



176 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



Mr Hog died in December, 1616, in his thirty-eighth year, 
and was succeeded by Patrick Urquhart, A.M., who was laure- 
ated in the University of Edinburgh on the 12th August, 1591. 
In 1593 he was presented to the charge of Langnewton, from 
1601 thence he was translated to Eckford in 1599, and in 1601 was 
removed to Lindean, continuing there till 1627. '^ ^^^ during 
his incumbency that the removal of the Parish Kirk from Bold- 
side to Galashiels occurred. In 161 7 a church was erected in 
Galashiels, and in 1622 the population of the western portion 
of the parish had increased to such an extent as warranted the 
transfer. The reporters to the Commission by which the change 
was effected gave the following reasons for the translation, — 

** There lived above 40x3 pepill in Gallowscheilds, and so meikle the more as 
we (the ministers of the adjoining parishes) find ane house already there, weel 
built, comlie appareled, and, which, with small help, as is provided, may 
easily be made sufficient for the whole pepill in their most frequent assem- 
blages." 

The same report also states that the old church of Lindean 
had been abandoned for the previous thirty-six years. 



CHAPTER III. 

THERE appears to have been a vacancy in Galashiels 
between 1627 and 1635, whether by reason of a disputed 
settlement or on account of the perpetual strife between 
Episcopacy and Presbyterianism, there is no record. 

The next minister was James Urquhart, A.M. He obtained 

his degree at the University of Edinburgh on the 26th July, 

1623. He was presented to Merton by Charles I. on the 20th 

1635 May, 1632, and translated to Galashiels in 1635. On the 4th 

February, 1646, a supplication was presented to Parliament 

** Be Mr James Urquhart, minister at Gallowscheillis, against James Scott 
of Gallowscheillis and John Pringill of Cockilferrie and some other persons 
as witnesses. Bearand that in the tyme of James Graham and his associatts, 
being in the south country, the said John Pringle sent the soume of ane 
thousand pundis, with his writtis in ane chist, to the hous of Buckholme, for 
securitie. And when the hous of Buckholme was assulted, the chist with the 
money and writtis was convoyed to Gallowscheillis, and came in the hands of 
Elizabeth Pringill, spous to the supplicant, who delyverit the samyne to John 
Pringill of Cockilferrie, her brother-in-law, to whom she knew the money and 
writtis belonged. And notwithstanding thereof, the said James Scott purchast 
ane warrant from the Comittee of estates for uplifting frae the supplicant the 
foirsaid soume, whilk he affirmed to be twenty five hundreth merkis. And 
thereupone he caused cite the supplicant, befoir the Comittee of the schyre, who 
ordained the supplicant to be computable for the soume, and caused incarcerate 
him in the tolbooth of Selkirk, and confyned him within the toune thereof, for 
the space of eight weeks, tile he was forced to grant ane band to the said James 
Scott of Gallowscheillis, for payment to him of the said soume of 2500 merkis." 

Pringill of Cockilferrie appeared and admitted having 
received the money from his sister-in-law, and on the 29th 
April, 1648, Parliament found the bond not due, and declared Mr 
Urquhart free. He was also in the unhappy position of owning 

**Ane tenement of land lyand at the foote of the Cannongait of Edinburgh, 
occupied be Lawerance Grahame, James' and Janet Scott, and others," 

177 L 



178 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

From which they would neither remove nor pay rent. He again 
supplicated Parliament in order to obtain redress, and on 
account of being 

" Anc poore minister not able to waite on, and waire out charges before the 
Lordis of Sessioune, and being necessitated to mortgage the said tenement for 
ane small soume for supplieing of his wyfF and five childringis necessitie/' 

On the 1 6th March, 1649, Parliament remitted his case to 
the Sheriff in respect that there was no sitting of Session. He 
died in 1650, aged about forty-seven. Considering the date of 
his death and the appointment of his successor, it appears 
that Mr Urquhart had either demitted his charge, or his 
successor had been his colleague for two years. Owing to the 
Presbytery records being incomplete at this date, no information 
is available from that source, but the following extracts from 
the doings of the Commission of the General Assembly may 
throw light on the matter, — 

** Edinburgh, 19/A November^ 1646. — Concerning the petition of Mr James 
Urquhart, the commission continues that mater till Tuesday come eight days." 

"Edinburgh, 2nd December^ 1646. — Concerning the petition of Mr James 
Urquhart, this day presented, it is the opinion of the commission that he be 
continued under suspension tile the next quarterly meeting of the commission 
in Februar, and in the meantyme that the Presbyterie provyd an expectant to 
preach at his Kirk.'* 

"Edinburgh, wth November^ 1647. — Messrs Robert Knox, John Knox, 
James Guthrie, Thomas Wilkie, Andro Cant, Johne Smith, and Patrick Gillespie, 
with the Moderator, are desired to consider what cause shall be taken with 
Mr James Urquhart. 

Eodem dicy post meredtan. 

Concerning Mr James Urquhart, It is the opinion of the commission of 
Assembly that Mr James be continued under suspension in respect of his 
present infirmity both in bodie and mynd, and they recomend to the 
Presbyterie in the meantyme, to take some course for providing the Kirk with 
an actuall minister, in such a way as Mr James shall have still a competent 
part of the stipend." 

On the 13th September, 1646, was fought the battle of 
Philiphaugh, when the Covenanting army, under General David 
Leslie, utterly routed the Royalist forces under the hitherto 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 179 

invincible Earl of Montrose. At that time the chief families 
upon the Borders were on the side of the Covenant, but it 
appears from the following Acts of the Commission of Assembly 
that the Pringles of Blindlee and Buckholm were exceptions, 
and, if not actually in arms, were at least strong supporters of 
the Royalist cause, — 

*' Edinburgh, 18/A November^ 1646. — This day Robert Pringill of Blindlie 
remitted to the Presbyterie of Selkirk to be exactly tryed and condignly 
censured for his complyance with the rebells, and they ar particularly desired 
to proceed against him with excommunication if they find no evidence of 
repentance and willingness to give full satisfaction according to the order 
prescribed, and that they report their diligence herein." 

** Edinburgh, 19/A November, 1646. — The Commission of Assemblie con- 
tinues George Pringill in Buckholm to the next quarterly meeting in Februar, 
and in the meantyme the Presbyterie of Selkirk is to deal with him, to bring 
him to repentance for his joyning with the rebells, and to report their opinions 
concerning him the forsaid day, quhairof the said George personally present is 
warn ed. Apud acta, * ' 

'•Edinburgh, nth February 1647.— This day George Pringill, soune to 
James Pringill of Buckholme, compeiring personally, and giving in the 
declaration and confession of his oflFences subscribed by his hand, the commis- 
sion remits him to the Presbyterie, to satisfie according to the Act of Assemblie, 
etc. ; recommending to them to be carefull to bring him to some sense of his 
offences before his satisfaction be received." 

Judging from the subsequent career of the Pringills of 
Blindlie and Buckholm, it appears as if the action of the 
Presbytery had not been successful in keeping the families 
from being active opponents of the Covenant, the memory of 
their conduct being long preserved in the couplet, — 

'^ Blainslie, Buckholm, and Blindlee, 
Persecutors a' three." 

James Urquhart was succeeded by Mark Duncan, A.M., 

who obtained his degree at the University of Edinburgh. He 

1648 was admitted to Galashiels in 1648, and died on the 15th 

November, 165 1, aged twenty-seven. A tablet is still to be 



i8o HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

seen inserted in the wall of the aisle in the old church- 
yard, bearing an inscription in Latin and Greek, to the 
following effect, — 

'* Caledonia bruised, bewails the slaughter of her heroes. 
The Church mourns the fall of her teachers. 
Mark Duncan, pastor, whose virtues outnumbered his years, 
Departed, not taken away by violence or by age. 
To his church, his country, his widow and dear kindred 
He says dying, I live, the victory is wpn. 
* For whom God loves dies young.' 

He died 15 Nov., A.D., 165 1, in the 27th year of his age 
and third of his ministry." 

The above allusion to Caledonia in all probability referred 
to the disastrous battle of Dunbar, in which the Scots were, 
in the previous year, so signally defeated by Cromwell. The 
quotation, '' For whom God loves dies young," appears to be 
what may be termed a christianised version of the pagan 
expression "Whom the gods love die young/' 

After the death of Mark Duncan another vacancy extending 
to six years took place. The next incumbent was Thomas 
Lowes, A.M., who graduated at the University of Edinburgh 
in July, 1643, and was appointed minister of Galashiels in 1657. 
His lot was castin unsettled times, he being deprived of his living 
in 1662. Mr Lowes was at this time a Presbyterian, and he 
was succeeded by Thomas Wilkie, A.M., who, it may be 
assumed, was an Episcopalian. Mr Wilkie appears to have 
been a landed proprietor, as he is represented as being in the 
receipt of an annual rent of 300 merks from the lands of Bewlie, 
etc. He took his degree at the University of Edinburgh on the 
1665 14th July, 1659, and was presented to Galashiels in 1665. He 
was translated to North Leith in 1672, and on the nth August, 
1687, he was elected by the Town Council of Edinburgph to the 
collegiate charge of the Tol booth Church. He was the only 
minister in the city not superseded at the Revolution by civil 
and ecclesiastical authority, and was appointed to Greyfriar's 
Church in January, 1691. On being requested afterwards to 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. i8i 

waive his appointment, he replied that he would very readily obey 
the good town, provided his legal rights as one of the ministers 
of Edinburgh were not prejudged. The Council then offered 
him the meeting-house on the Castle Hill, which he declined, as 
it was not one of the legal churches of the city. He was trans- 
lated to Lady Yester's Church, which he demitted on the 21st 
April, 1708, and died on the 7th January, 171 5. 

^r Wilkie was succeeded by Hugh Scott, A.M., who 
acquired his degree at the University of Edinburgh on the 26th 
July, 1649. He was called to Bedrule on the 22nd November, 
1657, and admitted in the month of March the following year. 
1672 In 1672 he was minister at Oxnam, and was translated to 
Galashiels the same year. He was one of the ** indulged'* 
ministers, or one of those Presbyterian divines allowed by 
Government to remain in their charge, though the polity of 
the Church was Episcopalian. Mr Scott remained at Galashiels 
till 1689, when he was translated to Stow, where he died at the 
age of sixty. It is recorded concerning him that 

*' He was a good and holie man, faithfull and painfull in his calling, singularly 
pious and much in the search and knowledge of the Scriptures. As he lived 
holilie so he died happilie in the Lord/' 

It was during the ministry of Mr Scott that the existing 
Session records were commenced, which date from 1672. The 
following entry throws a considerable amount of light upon the 
social and domestic life of the village, and also on the duties 
performed by the Kirk Session in the olden time, — 

^^ February 2'^rdy 1673. — Which day, Mr Hew Scott and the elders of the 
Church of Galashiels met. 

Compeared Janet Wyllie, against William Wilson, tailor, in Galashiels, 
for calling her an ill-favoured witch, liar, and loun, in the audience of many 
witnesses, namely — ^Janet Rodger, Alexander Kirkwood, Hugh Clapperton, 
Walter G6ddes, and Francis Brydon. The Session taking the same into 
consideration, appointed William Wilson to be summoned before them, and 
the aforesaid witnesses." 



i82 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

** March 2nd, 1673. — Which day, William Wilson being called, and 
posed anent the libel given against him by Janet Wyllie, he did flatly 
deny the same. The witnesses being summoned compearing, and William 
Wilson having nothing to object against any of them, they deponed as 
follows, — 

Alexander Brydon deponed he heard William Wilson call Janet Wyllie a 
witch; Walter Geddes heard William Wilson call Janet Wyllie a witch and 
a loun ; Hugh Clapperton did declare he heard William Wilson call Janet 
Wyllie a jade ; Alexander Kirkwood did declare he heard William Wilson call 
Janet Wyllie a thief and a loun. 

The Session finding the present process sufficiently proven, they appoint 
William Wilson to give satisfaction against the next Lord's day." 

^^ March 9/A. — Which day, William Wilson, tailor, in Galashiels, made 
public satisfaction for scandalising Janet Wyllie. " 

On the translation of Hew Scott to the parish of Stow, 
James Scott, A.M., succeeded to the vacant charge. Mr Scott 
obtained his degree at the University of Edinburgh on the 7th 

1689 April, 1675, and was appointed minister of Galashiels in 1689. 
Being an Episcopalian, he was deprived of his living in terms of 
the Act of Parliament on the 25th April, 1690. He died in 
Edinburgh on the 17th June, 1715, in the sixtieth year of 
his age. 

Presbyterianism being again the religion of Scotland, 
Thomas Lowes, who was deprived of his living in 1662, was 

1690 restored to the parish of Galashiels on the 25th April, 1690. 
He does not seem to have been favourably received by his 
parishioners, who suspected him of leanings towards Popery. 
The feeling rose to such a pitch that the Presbytery were com- 
pelled to interfere, and a meeting was held in Galashiels on the 
9th December, 1690, for the purpose of making inquiry regarding 
the differences between the people and their minister. This 
investigation probably had some influence on Mr Lowes' resigna- 
tion, which took place on the 4th March, 1691. He was called 
to Innerleithen in 1696, admitted 30th March, 1697, and died in 
November, 1703. 

The break-down of the power of King James in 1688 let 
loose the popular feeling against the Roman Catholics. It is 
recorded by Patrick Walker that on one occasion, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 183 

"A resolute band left Edinburg^h, and making their way to Traquair House, 
laid hands upon a great quantity of Romish wares, but not all, as some had 
been carried off and secreted. Accordingly, a party were detailed to search the 
house of a neighbouring clergyman, who had the name of being a Presbyterian 
minister, one Mr Thomas Louis. Mr Louis and his wife mocked them without 
offering them either meat or drink, though they had much need of it. At 
length two trunks were discovered, one of them containing a golden cradle, 
with Mary and the babe in her bosom, the other being filled with priests' 
robes. The whole of the articles being brought together were carried to 
Peebles, and solemnly burnt at the cross." 

There is every reason to believe that Mr Lowes, formerly 
minister in Galashiels, was the individual referred to in the 
above narrative. 



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CHAPTER IV. 

THE next minister, Hugh Craig, son of John Craig, 
merchant, burgess in Edinburgh, was of a very different 
stamp. Mr Craig studied in the University of Glasgow, 
and was called to Galashiels in October and ordained 15th 
1692 December, 1692. He married Christania Galloway, and had a 
family of two sons and two daughters. One named Margaret 
became the wife of the Rev. Thomas Thomson, minister of 
Auchtermuchty, and was the grandmother of the great legal 
antiquary, Thomas Thomson, and also of the distinguished land- 
scape painter, the Rev. John Thomson, minister of Duddingston. 
At the advent of Mr Craig, there were no elders in the 
parish. According to the Session records, it was in the 
month of March, 1693, ^^before ane eldership was established in 
the parochin.'* The elders elected were John Donaldson, 
Thomas Wilson, George Blaikie, James Scott, James Paterson, 
indwellers in Galashiels; John Mabon, in Hemphaugh; John 
Speeden, in Fairnelie; and William Haddon, in Lindean. 
They were exhorted by Mr Craig, — 

'* To be faithful and diligent in endeavouring in their stations to discourage 
sin and looseness, and encourage and excite the people in the visiting of them 
to be careful and constant in serving God alone and in their families." 

In the month of September the same year, a further addition 
was made to the eldership, and **they did nominat" George 
Hall, bailie in Galashiels; Robert Wilson, younger, there; 
William Jamieson, in Lindean; George Scott, in Bolesyde; and 
David Speeden, in Blindlee. 

The elders must have been fully occupied in looking after 
the morals and keeping a sharp lookout upon the walk and 
conversation of the parishioners. An instance of the strict- 
ness with which they looked after the doings of the villagers is 

184 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 185 

afforded in the case of Thomas Messer and his wife Janet. 
This couple were summoned before the elders to explain why 
they were walking in the fields in the time of divine service. 
They appeared and stated ''that they were going to Boldsidd to 
see Janet's mother, who was sick.'* This, evidently, was not 
considered a sufficient reason, as they escaped a public rebuke 
by promising to be better observers of the Lord's Day in future. 
The action of the Session appears at times to have been 
somewhat strict and unmerciful, as shown in the case of 

**Isobel Paterson who having, by reason of sickness, been but three days in 
the place of public repentance, the officer is ordered to acquaint her that 
whenever she recovers health she return to the foresaid place." 

The proper observance of the Sabbath was earnestly incul- 
cated upon the people, any neglect of the recommendations of 
the Session being visited with sharp rebuke. This Robert 
Inglis, merchant in jGalashiels, found, when not having the fear 
of the Session before his eyes, he was guilty of "the scandalous 
practice of opening his shop-door on the Lord's Day." When 
summoned to appear and answer for his conduct, he complied, 
and admitted having opened his shop-door on the Lord's Day, 
but pled in mitigation that he had only supplied some neces- 
saries for sick people. This line of defence did not deceive 
the Session, who had evidently made themselves familiar with 
the transaction, for they told him that they did not consider 
that snuff and tobacco came under the list of necessaries for sick 
people. A private rebuke was administered, with the caution 
that if he should again be found guilty of a similar offence, he 
would require to make a public appearance. 

However strictly the Session looked after the behaviour of 
the parishioners, they were no less faithful in their dealings with 
each other. It was customary for them to meet at intervals, 
and as each member retired in rotation inquiry was made by the 
minister regarding the walk and conversation of the absent 
brother. The office of elder in those days was no sinecure; their 
duties took a much wider range, and their meetings were more 
frequent and prolonged than is customary at the present 



i86 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

day. Notwithstanding all their care, it is very suggestive to 
find minuted that on certain days there had been no cases of 
discipline. These were of such frequent occurrence that an 
omission in the usual routine was considered worthy of being 
specially noted. 

Long after the Reformation, the people were often found 
practising some traditional remnant of their former religion. 
They clung with peculiar tenacity to various superstitious prac- 
tices, and repeated efforts were required to put them down. In 
1645 the General Assembly of the Kirk of Scotland ordained 

"That whatsoever person or persons, hereafter, shall be found guilty in 
keeping of the foresaid superstitious dayes, shall be proceeded against by 
Kirk censure, and shall make their public repentance therefor in the face 
of the congregation, where the offence is committed. " 

Not only had a public appearance to be made by adults, 
but scholars and students found guilty of observing Yule or 
other Roman Catholic festivals were to be severely chastised. 
Masters found granting liberty of ^Wacance** on these days 
had to appear before the next General Assembly to be censured; 
and if the scholars refused to submit to correction, or became 
fugitives from discipline, it was ordained *^that they be not 
received in any other schoole or coUedge in the Kingdom." 

A case of this nature occurred in Galashiels, in which the 
Session were compelled to take notice of the conduct of one of 
their own number. This was Robert Wilson, who was charged 
with having '* joyned in playing at the football upon Fasten&- 
even." His fault was aggravated by being committed after 
Andrew Darling, in Galashiels, ^^ preached on the said day, 
and spoke particularly against that prophane and super- 
stitious custom." The culprit appeared before his brethren, 
confessed the charge, and expressed his grief at having given 
offence to honest people. In order to remove the scandal 
he was suspended from office for three months. Robert appears 
to have been a publican, as shortly afterwards he was again 
charged with 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 187 

'' Affording ale to some persons in his house to drink on the fast day, and he 
did bear them companie in the time of divine service." 

He again appeared, humbly confessing that 

'^ He did bear companie on the fast day during divine service with strangers 
in his house, but it was sore against his will, being violently detained by 
them." 

The Session was scarcely credulous enough to be imposed 
upon by this explanation, and he was again suspended and 
sharply rebuked and admonished to walk more humbly and 
Christian ly. Six months afterwards the suspension was removed; 
but Robert must have been a black sheep, as he was shortly 
afterward found guilty 

** Of not carrying himself as becometh his station, having played at the wheel 
of fortune in the public mcrcat." 

This proved the last straw; his cup was now full, and, after 
serious and solemn deliberation, he was deposed from the 
eldership. 

Another entry in the Session records shows the care 
exercised by the Session in making due provision for the regular 
attendance of the parishioners at divine service. It was as 
follows, — 

'^The Session ordered four pound Scots to be payed out of the poor's 
money for the boatmen of Bolesyde, for the passage of those in the parrochin 
of Galashiels who live on the other side of Tweed, in their coming to the 
church and going from it." 

1695 In 1695 the necessity for a new bell had arisen, as at that 

date it is recorded that at a joint meeting of the Session and 
heritors it was agreed that 

^^ Galashiels should be at the expenses, causing cast the kirk bell anew, it 
being then brocken, and upon its being founded, and castin again, and get up, 
each heritor was to repay the said Gala ilk ane their proportion of what shall 
be the charges in renewing the bell as foresaid." 



i88 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

In those days collections were taken in the churches for 
purposes that sound strange to modern ears. At that time the 
Session received a receipt for the sum of eighteen pounds Scots, 
which was collected for the repair of Ancrum bridge. On 
another occasion they collected money for the purpose of building 
a bridge over the Elwand, In this case it was a house-to-house 
visitation, as the collectors reported that 

''They had gone through the haill toun, and all they could get for 
helping to build ane brigg over Elwan, was fourteen pounds, six shillings 
Scots; six pounds whereof was given by Sir James Scott of Gala, and they 
had sent doun to Mr Wilson, minister at Melrose, ten pounds thereof." 

How they disposed of the balance is not recorded. On another 
occasion, the Session received a discharge for the sum of twelve 
pounds Scots which was collected on 29th December, 1 700, for 

** Helping to ransome Mr Simpson and others, who were taken prisoners by 
the Algiers." 

Again ten pounds Scots was collected at the church door 
for repairing the harbour of Haymouth, and another collection, 
amounting to four pounds Scots, was devoted to ** repairing ane 
harbour at Banff.** 

No inconsiderable amount of the time of the Session was 
taken up in connection with fixing the duties and emoluments 
of the '' beddel '* and maintaining a suitable mortcloth. At this 
time they were under the necessity of sending to Holland for 
velvet to make a new one, the account for which was, — 



Imprimis — for — ells of velvet, 

Item — for five pounds and a half of silk at 1 2/3 

per lb., for fringes, 
Item — for tartan for a wallet and strings, . . . 
Item — for lyning thereto, 
Item — for working of the fringes. 
Item — for making the mortcloth and wallet, 

Scots. 



Lib. 


B. 


D. 


80 








69 


06 





02 


02 


8 


04 


01 





09 


GO 





04 


00 





168 


09 


8 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



189 



When the mortcloth was ready, the Session gave directions 
to take the best parts of the old one and apply them to the 
making of a small one for children. The charge for their use 
was for the large one eighteen shillings and two shillings Scots 
to the ^^beddel," and nine shillings with one shilling Scots to 
that official for the small one. 

^70^ In 1 701 it was a common practice for a considerable section 

of the congregation to pass their time in the churchyard during 
service. The attention of the Session being called to this prac- 
tice, they very promptly put an effectual stop to it by causing 
intimation to be made from the pulpit, — 

** That except those persons come within the church doors they will be 
delated to the civil magistrate. ** 

In 1702, before the Communion could be celebrated, the 
*' beddel '' was sent to Mr Rutherford, minister at ** Yara,*' for 
the loan of the cups and tickets. The want of these necessary 
articles possibly arose from the custom that had formerly prevailed 
of the Episcopalian and Presbyterian ministers being in turn 
deposed and carrying off what they considered their belong- 
ings with them. In preparation for the ordinance, it w^s also 
directed that the elders procure **ane tent, seats and tables. Sir 
James Scott of ijrala furnishing the bread and wine according to 
wont.'' 



CHAPTER V. 

THE first mention of Galashiels in the records of the Teind 
Office occurs in 1709. These records are only com- 
plete since 1700, owing to the loss they suffered 
during the time of Cromwell by being carried off to London. 
In re-transmission the vessel was wrecked, and a fire in 1700 
destroyed the fresh records that had accumulated up to that 
date. The notice in question is an application to the Court of 
Teinds for a suitable stipend by the Rev. Hugh Craig. The 
application was granted, the decree being dated 5th January, 
1709, but the proceedings afford no information regarding the 
early history of the parish. Mr Craig stated 

*' That he had been minister from 15th December, 1692, and had but a small 
allowance, not suitable for the circumstances of that post, and even some of 
what his predecessors were in use to get payment of was abstracted, and he 
had no Decreet of Modification or Locality to oblige those liable to make 
payment thereof, and it was very troublesome and expensive to be yearly 
pursuing before inferior courts.'* 

This seems to show that the minister had no official warrant 
for the collection of his stipend, and there is no indication that 
there ever had been one. The heritors at that time were James 
Scott of Gala, Robert Rutherford of Fairneylea, Gideon Ruther- 
ford of Rink, William Plummer of Middlestead, George Curror 
of Harperwoodburn, portioner of Lindean; Robert Ker of 
Prestoun, portioner of Lindean; James Cunningham of Hinds- 
hope, Thomas Wilkie, one of the ministers in Edinburgh, and 
George Wilkie, his son. The total rental as amended was 
jC^43j i8s lofd (or as there stated, ;{^io, 127, 6s 8^d Scots.) 
The stipend awarded was 1200 marks, with 50 merks for Com- 
munion elements, equal to jC^sS 6s 8d Scots, or ^69 8s lofd 
Sterling. Mr Craig rem)ained minister of Galashiels for nine- 
teen years, and died in 171 1, 

190 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 191 

On the J 8th April, 171 1, Mungo Clarkson was licensed by 
the Presbytery of Edinburgh and presented to the living of 
Galashiels by the Duke of Roxburghe. This presentation was 
objected to by John Scott of Gala, who claimed this right, which 
he exercised in favour of George Hall, Chaplain to the Laird of 
Torsonce. Pending the settlement of the dispute, both candi- 
^714 dates were withdrawn, and in 17 14, Mr Clarkson received a call 
to Currie, in the Presbytery of Edinburgh. 

The following is a copy of an old manuscript in the posses- 
sion of Mr Scott of Gala, regarding the transfer of the Parish 
Church to Galashiels. It is dated 17 14, and purports to be 

'^Information of two old indwellers in Galashiels, Hugh Darling and George 
Hadden, aged about 75 years, ^nent the practice of the ministers of this paroch, 
and grounds for fixing the Kirk at Galashiels. 

They inform that they have heard old indwellers in this place frequently 
affirm that tho' it be of verity that the minister exercised his office by preaching 
at the Kirk of Lindean before the Reformation (Galashiels being at that time 
less(^than Lindean), yet, upon the first beginning of the Reformation he came 
to officiat upon the forenoon at Lindean, and the afternoon at Boldside, the 
common passage on this side Tweed, and afterwards by degrees they came to 
officiat in ye forenoon at Boldside, and afternoon at Galashiels. And there- 
after upon the considerable increase of the toun of Galashiels they preached 
the whole day at Galashiels in the Tolbooth for several years before the 
building of the church, and at last in the 1617 upon the further and further 
increase of the toun the Kirk was built at Galashiels, and the Kirk of the 
Lindean since that time has still gone to ruin and was never officiat in, the 
grounds and reasons for which are plainly as follows, — 
L — It can easily be instructed by the examination rolls that all the persons 

on the other side Tweed wilLscarce amount to 300 examinable persons 

at farthest. 
11. — The toun of Galashiels is now very considerable by three yearly fairs 

and a weekly mercat, the customs whereof we have oft heard say 

were but fifty merks at most, and sometimes less, which yet now 

are set for more than four hundred merks. 
III. — We can get it instructed that Mr Craig, late minister here, had in bis 

roll, 800 examinable persons within the toun of Galashiels. 
IV. — Beside all these there are betwixt two and three hundred examinable 

persons on this side Tweed beside the toun of Galashiels. 



192 HISTORY OF GALASHIEJ^S. 

V. — As an evidence of the fewness of parochiners on the other side Tweed 

where Lindean stands, the boatman of Boldside receives only four 

shillings yearly for carrying all such as are on the other side Tweed 

to Galashiels Kirk. 

VI. — Besides all which we are informed that ever since the Reformation 

certainly the minister*s manse was always in the toun of Galashiels, 

it being also probable that it was there before, seeing we never 

heard any say there was an appearance of a manse at Lindean. 

Which thing being so plain and notour both in the time of prelacy 

and presbytery did overbalance against the family of Roxburgh and 

others there frequent strugglings; so that since the 1646 or thereby 

there has been no essay made to get it return to the Lindean. 

All which being written at the direction of the above-named Hugh Darling, 

litster (dyer), in Galashiels, and Georg Haddon, merchant, there, are 

subscribed at Galashiels upon the 24th February, 17 141 by us before these 

witnesses, Robert Darling, minister of the Gospel at Ewes, and John 

Donaldson, presently bailie at Galashiels. 

(Signed) H. Darling. 

Georg Hadden. 
That these presents were subscribed by Hugh Darling and Georg 
Haldon, indualers in Galasheils, befor me, John Dpnaldson, present bailze in 
G^lasheils, day, yeir, and pleas foresaid, is ate^tid by 

[Signed) Jo. Donaldson." 



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CHAPTER VI. 

AFTER the death of Mr Craig there was a vacancy for the 
following three years, and the next minister was the Rev, 
Henry Davidson, A.M. 
Mr Davidson was born in the parish of Eckford in 1687, 
and took his degree in the University of Edinburgh on the 27th 
April, 1705, being licensed by the Presbytery of Jedburgh on the 
15th March, 1712. He was presented to Galashiels with the 
unanimous consent of heritors, elders, and parishioners, and 
ordained 23rd February, 17 14. Shortly after the advent of Mr 
Davidson, the church was found to be too small and the parish- 
ioners drew up and presented the following petition to the Laird 
of Gala, — 

1 7 16 *< Galashbills, Dec. ao/A, 1716. 

To the Honourable Sir Jambs Scott of Gala 

The humble representation of the inhabitants of the paroch of 
Galasheills showeth, 

That whereas we the commons of this paroch have for a long time 
laboured under great inconveniency by the Kirk's being too little for accomo- 
dating a paroch which is turned so numerous and no effectual methods have 
yet been fain upon to remove this grievance, tho severall overtures have been 
made particularly in our late minister, Mr Craig's, time, we have at last resolved 
to make application to you requesting you to take this circumstance under 
your serious consideration. 

We need not put you in mind of the great numbers that are obliged to 
stand during the whole time of divine worship in the entrys, which is very 
uneasy to themselves, besides the difficulty thereby occasioned to the old 
and infirm to struggle through the throng to their seats. And even those 
that have some share of a seat still want accomodation for the greater 
part of their familys, who are put to shift for themselves with the greatest 
difficulty and uncertainty, hundreds of them being obliged almost every 
Lord's day to stand without doors, where they hear but very, indistinctly, 
beside the other inconveniences they are exposed to. Nor can it be passed 
without the utmost regret that the younger people of whom there are great 

193 M 



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194 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

numbers in the place, are scarce ever allowed to set a foot in the kirk, 
whereby they will naturally contract a dislike of the ordinances, and inevitably 
be traind up in the breach of the Lord's day, by playing at home or in the 
fields. 

We therfor earnestly desire that you will convene the heritors as soon as 
possible to concert measures for enlarging the kirk. And to show our 
sincerity in this affair, we hope that against your meeting we shall be able to 
condescend upon a sure fund that may do much to extend the kirk nine 
couples at the east end which will make the pulpit stand directly in the 
middle, and make full room for the accomodation of all that want seats 
conform to their contributions, whereby divine worship will be attended with 
more conveniency on all occasions. 

Your cordial concurrence in this good work will be a lasting obligation 
upon the whole inhabitants of this paroch and their posterity, in whose name 
we subscribe ourselves, 

Hon. Sir, 
Your Honours 
Most Humble, 
Most Obedient Servants, 
Jo. Donaldson, Alex. Mathesone, 
Jo. Tait, Robt. Amers, 

Thomas Sheill, John Johnstone, 

William Brydon, Adam Paterson. 
Andrew Thomson." 

A meeting of heritors was convened according to the prayer 
of the petition, of which the following is the minute, — 

17^7 "GALASmELLS,/tf«jV. 9/A, 1717. 

The sd day Sir James Scott of Gala and Robert Rutherford of 
Ffairnielie having mett to consider the representation on the preceding pages: 
And having called before ym severall of the toun of Galashiells for themselves 
and oy^s of the paroch y^of who have declared their great inclination to have 
the Kirk augmented in the terms of the sd representation. Whereby for 
their own interests are of the opinion the same should be enlarged and for 
themselves do undertake to uphold and maintain the roof of the Kirk and 
inlargemt yrof to be made, but doe think it proper the oyer heritors of the 
paroch gett a new advertisement to attend here on Saturday next, being the 
12th instant, and when the Kirk is inlarged it's their opinion that the sitters 
contributory for the sd inlargement be accomodate wt lofts and seats at the 
sight of the heritors of the paroch, which when done by the appointment of 
the heritors is to be recorded in the Session book in order for their more peace- 
able possession y^of in all time comeing. 

(Signed) J. Scott. 

Ro. Rutherford." 



100 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS- 195 

The next meeting accordingly took place on the 12th 
January, 171 7, regarding which it is recorded, — 

^^The sd day Sir James Scott of Gala, William Plummer of Middlestead, 
and the sd Ffairnielie having mett and Mr Deans having write ane excuse 
that he cannot attend, but therein promises to agree to what the oyer 
heritors does in the above affair: And they having called before them a great 
many of the parochiners of Galashiells who have undertaken to take doun and 
rebuild the inlargemt of the Kirk, conforme to the representation. And ifor 
qlk they engage to deliver in their obligation to George Kirkwood, clerk of 
Galashiells, before the taking doun of any part y^of. The heritors on the 
other hand are of the opinion that the sd contributors for the sd inlargemt 
be accomodated wt lofts and seats upon the parochiners their severall 
charges conforme to their collections, at the heritors and Mr Davidsone, 
mini*, their sight, who in case of any difference amongst them as to their 
possessions are to determine the same, and the heritors are to uphold the 
fabrick of the Kirk, and ifor the security of their several possessions the same 
is to be recorded in the Session books conforme to the former sederunt: And 
the heritors doe hereby appoint the sd George Kirkwood, their clerk, who 
is hereby authorised to give extracts of this and the former sederunt wt the 
representation given in to the heritors for the safety and security of the 
parochiners for taking doun the walls of the Kirk in order to the inlargemt 
yrof: And the sd clerk is to take their sd bond unto his custody, who is to 
keep the same wt Mr Dean's letter to be ifurthcomeing to the heritors. 

(Signed) J. Scott. 

Wm. Plummer. 

Ro. Rutherford." 

Mr Davidson was married to Catherine Scott of Gala on 
the 23rd February, 1727, but she died in childbed on the 6th 
February, 1728. During his ministry Mr Davidson was most 
diligent in his pastoral duty, and in the exercise of discipline. 
He allowed the eldership to lapse, and filled their places with 
deacons. He was one of the twelve brethren who gave in a repre- 
sentation and petition to the General Assembly on the nth May, 
1 72 1, against an Act of the Assembly passed the preceding year 
condemning the '' Marrow of Modern Divinity.'' On this 
account these divines were scoffingly termed the twelve apostles, 
of whom he was the last survivor. In 1737 a change came over 
his ecclesiastical views. Until that period the Communion had 
been celebrated annually, but, having adopted the principles of 



196 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS- 

the Independents, Mr Davidson ceased dispensing that ordinance 
in Galashiels for the subsequent twenty years. His friend, the 
Rev. Gabriel Wilson of Maxton, held the same opinions, and they 
formed an Independent congregation at Maxton, where, with 
twenty-four others, they frequently observed the Lord's Supper. 
When Mr Davidson underwent this change in his views he 
expressed his willingness to resign his charge, but his brethren 
in the Presbytery declined to receive it, and he continued in 
possession of his church and benefice till his death, which took 
place on the 24th October, 1756, in the sixty-ninth year of his 
age, and forty-second year of his ministry. 

His friend the Rev. Thomas Boston of Ettrick characterised 
him as being 

** A man of great gravity, piety, and tenderness, learned and judicious, well 
acquainted with books, a great preacher, delivering in a taking manner 
masterly thoughts in an unaffected style, endowed with the gift of prayer, in 
heavenly oratory beyond any man I ever saw, extremely modest and reserved 
in his temper, but a kind and affectionate friend." 

During Mr Davidson's incumbency the following inventory 
was taken of the effects belonging to the church, — 

''Two silver cups, a large velvet mortcloth, a second same size, a little 
one for children; four large cloths for the Communion service, with a lesser 
one, two large napkins for the element plates, two napkins for baptism, two 
napkins for collections, six Communion tables, forty-one sitting forms, one form 
for scandalous persons rebuked before the congregation, a chest with a little 
box for money and papers, two pewter basins, a church Bible, and two 
registers." 

As showing the bent of Mr Davidson's mind, in 1723 he 
appointed a special fast day to be observed in the parish on 
account of the following sins and shortcomings, — 

**The breach of the National Covenant with the Solemn League and 
Covenant, the springing up and spreading of error, the growth of Arianism, 
and the increase of Popery. The late sinful union between England and 
Scotland, toleration and patronage, and the imposing of sinful oaths. '* 

Mr Davidson seems to have been a man of superior 
sagacity, as well as a pious, eloquent, and esteemed minister. 
At the earlier period of his ministry superstition was 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 197 

prevalent, and not only had he to keep watch over his 
flock, but, it was said, that on their behalf he had occasionally 
to face the Evil One or some of his emissaries. The following 
legend is related concerning him: — The old tower of Buckholm 
was at one time inhabited by one of the Pringles, who 
was a cruel and blood-thirsty persecutor of the Covenanters. 
Some large iron hooks, fastened in the roof of the vault, were 
said to have been used for suspending his victims by the chin. 
The day of retribution came; he was called to his account, but 
the grave denied him rest on account of his misdeeds. His 
troubled ghost, goaded by a gnawing conscience, wandered 
nightly round the scene of his iniquities. This awful doom was 
to continue till his foul spirit should he accosted by some daring 
mortal, whose unpolluted tongue was to break the spell. 
Regularly at midnight the groaning spectre appeared, striking 
such a terror over the few remaining inhabitants of the place 
that none dared to venture forth at that dread hour. At length 
the position became utterly intolerable, and the building was 
about to be totally deserted, when it was suggested to apply to 
Mr Davidson for advice and assistance. Ever ready to respond 
to the cry of suffering humanity, Mr Davidson told them to 
allay their fears. He appointed a night on which he would 
encounter the frightful appearance, and promised, if within his 
power, an end would be put for ever to the nightly wanderings 
of the dreaded spectre. 

The time arrived and the minister made his appearance with 
a Bible under his arm. Toward midnight all the inhabitants 
of the tower were gathered in the old hall. After engaging in 
devotional exercises, he strictly cautioned them to remain together, 
to open neither door nor window, nor at their peril seek to know 
aught regarding the unearthly interview that was about to take 
place. With the Bible in his hand he sallied forth. During 
his absence not a word was spoken, the trembling inmates 
seemed to suppress their very breath, so awful was their 
apprehension of the encounter between the mortal and immortal. 
At length, to their intense relief, Mr Davidson returned and broke 



igS HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

the silence by saying, *' Peace be with you all, let us return thanks 
to the Great Reliever of all our troubles, and henceforth know 
that the cause of your fears is laid to rest. Ask no questions; 
what has transpired can never be revealed." 

The old tower still rears its head, but since that awful night, 
'*The Deil o' Buckholm'* left it in the peaceful possession of 
the shepherds and others, who now find a quiet home within 
its old grey lichen-covered walls. 

Mr Davidson was succeeded by Alexander Glen, who 
studied at the University of Edinburgh, and was licensed by the 
Presbytery of Haddington on the loth October, 1749. He 
received a call to Kirkton on the 19th July and was ordained on 
the 25th September, 1751. He was presented to Galashiels by 
Hugh Scott of Gala on the 8th March, and admitted on the 7th 
1757 December, 1757. As there had been no elders during the 
greater part of Mr Davidson's ministry, the two principal 
heritors, Hugh Scott of Gala and Robert Rutherford of 
Fernilee, were appointed to the office. Under Mr Glen a 
vigorous discipline was maintained, and penitents, not only for 
breaches of the Seventh Commandment but also for drunkenness 
and evil speaking, had, without respect of persons, to appear 
before the congregation and submit to public rebuke. Under 
his regime, the most severe penalty recorded in the Galashiels 
Session records was imposed upon a married man named 
Mabon, who had been guilty of an aggravated breach of the 
Seventh Commandment. He was ordered 

^'To stand in sackcloth at the most patent door of the church at the ringing of 
the second bell, and as soon as public worship was begun, he should come 
into the church, and appear in the public place of repentance.** 

On ordinary occasions three appearances were deemed 
sufficient, but in this case the offender had to present himself in 
the above guise no fewer than nineteen times, before he was 
restored to Church privileges, 

lycg In 1759 the dilapidated condition of the manse rendered 

repairs necessary, and a sum, amounting to jC^j 13s id, 
was expended in providing material, and a further sum 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 



199 



of £539 I OS was required to complete the work. In these 
circumstances, Mr Glen pointed out to the heritors that this 
sum, together with the material which had been procured, would 
prove sufficient to build a new manse upon the land set off for a 
glebe. In consideration of having the manse upon the ground, 
he offered to accept the money and material, together with the 
old manse, which would be utilised in erecting the new one, 
which he undertook to cover with slates, while the offices 
would be covered with *' divot** and thatch, and to this proposal 
the heritors agreed. No sooner, however, was the work com- 
pleted than Mr Glen was translated to Dirleton and admitted 
on the 19th October, 1769. He died on the 6th March, 1805, 
aged seventy-nine, in the fifty-fourth year of his ministry. 



CHAPTER VIL 

THE next incumbent was the Rev. Robert Douglas, son of 
the Rev. John Douglas, minister of Jedburgh, who had 
rather a curious history. He was formerly minister of 
Kenmore in the highlands of Perthshire. During the rebellion 
(1744-46) he did his utmost to keep his parishioners loyal to the 
Crown. After the battle of Culloden, he interceded on behalf of 
those who had taken part in the rebellion, and by his influence 
saved the lives of many. The Government did not leave his 
services unrewarded, and in 1757 presented him to the parish of 
Jedburgh. Previous to this, however, the Rev. John Bonar, 
minister of Cockpen, had been presented to the same living, but 
was bitterly opposed by the congregation, who had set their 
hearts upon having the Rev. Thomas Boston of Oxnam. 
Meanwhile Mr Bonar had another call to Perth, which he 
accepted. In continued disregard of the popular wish, a pre- 
sentation was issued in favour of Mr Douglas, against whose 
settlement the congregation were more opposed than ever. So 
flagrant and high-handed was the conduct of those in authority 
that the Presbytery declined to induct Mr Douglas, and pleaded 
that the presentation should be withdrawn, for this among other 
reasons **that the whole parish except five are openly against 
him." In May, 1758, the General Assembly enjoined the 
Presbytery to admit Mr Douglas, which, under such pressure, 
was eventually accomplished. 

Robert Douglas, the future minister of Galashiels, was 
born in the manse at Kenmore on the 17th July, 1747. Nothing 
is known of his early life or where he received his education, 
but in all probability it was at Aberdeen, as it was from that 
University he received his degree of D.D. In the twetity-third 
year of his age, he was presented by Hugh Scott of Gala to the 
living of Galashiels, and was ordained by the Presbytery of 

200 



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Rev. Dr Paterson 
Rev. Dr Phin 



Rev. Dr Douglas 



Rev. Dr Veitch 
Rev. Dr Gloag 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 201 

1770 Selkirk on his birthday, 17th July, 1770. In 1775, the living 
was augmented from jC^oo to ;^iooo Scots, with ;^4, 3s 4d 
Sterling for Communion elements, besides the glebe, which was 
rented for ;^ 15 annually. In 1780 another addition was made 
to the stipend on an application to the Court of Teinds. In 
support of his claim, Mr Douglas urged the extra expense of 
being obliged to use a boat in going from one part of the parish 
to another. The heritors objected to the increase on the ground 
that Mr Douglas was 

''A young man unmarried, and therefore does not deserve the same favour 
from his country that nearly all the settled clergy of the Church of Scotland 
merited." 

However, the Court thought otherwise, and augmentation 
was granted to the extent of ;^i8, is i|d Sterling, thus raising 
the stipend to jCS^y ids, including the allowance for Communion 
elements. 

When Mr Douglas came to Galashiels the church was 
in a somewhat ruinous state, and the heritors voluntarily 
assessed themselves **to put the kirk into a decent condition, 
by plastering the roof, repairing the doors and windows, 

1 781 and casting it upon the outside." In 1781 further repairs 
were necessary, and, in recognition of the readiness with which 
the heritors had agreed to accommodate him in connection 
with the manse, Mr Douglas undertook to relieve them from 
any further outlay on the church during his incumbency, 
except it should fail in walls, roof, joists, floor, or windows. 
At the same time he informed the heritors that the church- 
yard wall was in bad repair, caused by the weavers and skinners 
drying their webs and skins upon it, a practice which he was 
authorised to put a stop to. 

1^83 In 1783 Mr Douglas made his first appearance as an author, 

his work being a pamphlet of 108 pages, entitled Observations 
on the Nature of Oaths. At that time he made a journey on 
horseback through England by way of Newcastle and York to 
London, and from thence to Bath, returning by way of Carlisle. 



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202 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

He was not long settled in Galashiels till his strong, robust 
mind began to show itself. He soon saw that the antiquated, 
and in many cases, cruel system of Church discipline tended to 
defeat its own object. He succeeded in persuading the Session 
to take the subject into consideration, and was the means of 
introducing into Galashiels a new method of dealing with 
offenders against the moral law. In place of the old system of 
public rebuke, a fine of a guinea was substituted, provided certain 
conditions had been complied with, the fine being applied to the 
relief of those in distress whose names were not on the regular 
poor's roll. 
1787 In 1787 the state of the manse necessitated another appeal 

to the heritors, and Mr Douglas reported that 

''The joists, floors, stairs, and several windows were insufficient, and the walls 
admitted water in several places; beside, the house was too small for a rising 
family. There was no garret, the stair being also dangerous for children, the 
upper rooms seldom admitted fires, both they and the kitchen being veiy 
cold" 

In the circumstances, while claiming suitable repairs, he 
offered to carry all the material necessary, provided the heritors 
would agree to the addition of a nursery with a garret above it. 
Should they agree to build a new manse, he offered to provide 
all the necessary carriage, and subscribe ;^20, ;^30, or even 
;^5o in cash, according to the locality and accommodation 
provided. The manse was inspected, and an addition was made 
conform to the desire of Mr Douglas, at an outlay of ;^ 104. The 
office houses next claimed attention, and that matter was com- 
promised by the erection of a cart shed costing ;^I2. 

About this time Mr Douglas found himself engaged in a 
great controversy, viz.: — the election of a successor to Dr 
Drysdale, the principal clerk of the Assembly. The Moderate 
party of the Church fixed upon him as a candidate, but he 
declined the honour, and his name was not brought forward. 
1793 In 1793 Mr Douglas raised another action for an augment- 

ation of stipend, and by that time he had overcome the former 
.objection urged against him by the heritors. He now based 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS- ^203 

his claim on the ground that the stipend was insufficient for 
**the expenses of a family/' He further stated that the parish 
contained about 1000 inhabitants, the rental being jC^ogs 
Sterling, made up as follows: — Hugh Scott of Gala, jC logi; 
Mark Pringle of Clifton, £468; Andrew Plummer of Middle- 
stead, ;^29o; Nicol Milne of Faldonside, jC^^^; Rev, Charles 
Findlater, jCst; and George and John Anderson of Bridge- 
haugh, ;^32. The stipend was augmented to the extent of two 
chalders and a half boll of meal, and a half boll of '*bear/' 
New offices were also erected at the manse at a cost of ;^I05, 
but, when the work was completed, it was discovered that no 
allowance had been made for hecks, mangers, &c,, and these the 
heritors declined to pay- On coming under obligation to main- 
tain the offices, Mr Douglas wrote at the foot of the agreement, 

"Though I willingly sign the above obligation to uphold the office houses, 
and leave them in good conditoh, I do not consider it to include hecks, 
mangers, and fittings generally, provided at my sole expense, and belonging to 
me or my heirs." 

In consequence of the churchyard wall having again fallen 
into a ruinous condition, it was rebuilt '*two ells in height;" Mr 
Douglas at the same time agreed to keep his horses and black 
cattle from pasturing within the enclosure, 

1797 In 1797 Mr Douglas received the degree of Doctor of 
Divinity from the University of Aberdeen. He now occupied 
an influential position in the Church, and was not only the 
respected minister of what at that date was a rural parish, 
but exercised considerable influence in the Church Courts. He 
carried on a correspondence with the leading men of the Church, 
and belonged to what was termed the Constitutional section, 
which would now be regarded as the extreme moderate party. 
He did not, however, imitate them in their preaching, but was, 
there is reason to believe, evangelical in his discourses, though 
none of his sermons are preserved. 

1798 In 1798 Dr Douglas published a work entitled General 
View of the Agriculture of the Counties of Roxburgh and 
Selkirk, with Observations on the Means of their Improvement. 



204 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

This work was undertaken at the request of Sir John Sinclair 
and several gentlemen in both counties, and, though now out of 
date, it is full of information concerning the state of the district 
a century ago. 
1804 ^^ ^^4 ^^ Douglas made an application for a further 

increase to his stipend, the rental of the parish having risen to 
;^3i90, which was granted to the extent of four chalders. 



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CHAPTER VIII. 



DR DOUGLAS was a notable man in many respects, but 
that which procured for him a lasting reputation in his 
own neighbourhood was his efforts to promote the 
woollen trade. He freely lent his money to the manufacturers 
of that period, and, with his shrewd common sense, insisted 
that they should provide themselves with the newest and best 
machinery. It was to the credit of those whom he thus assisted 
that they faithfully repaid him, yet all honour is due to him for 
his confidence and generosity, and for the manner in which he 
continually interested himself for the promotion of their material 
benefit. It may be fairly asserted that, but for his assistance, 
the woollen trade in Galashiels would not have so early devel- 
oped into the magnitude to which it attained. In every time 
of need he came forward, and assisted the manufacturers 
to weather the storm; not only proving himself their spiritual 
guide, but also their liberal-hearted benefactor. 
1811 In 181 1 occurred the notable sale of Cartleyhole, or, as it is 

spelt in an old business-book which belonged to a merchant in 
Galashiels, ** Cartlawhole," and in Melrose Session records, 
''Cartlihole." Regarding the transaction, Walter Scott thus 
writes to a friend, — 

'' As my lease of this place (Ashiestiel) is out, I have bought for about 
;^4000 a property in the neighbourhood extending along the bank of the river 
Tweed for about half a mile. . . . This is the greatest incident that has 
taken place in our domestic concerns, and I assure you we are not a little 
proud at being greeted as the Lord and Lady of Abbotsford." 

This property formerly belonged to a portioner named Dick- 
son, whose last representative carried it by marriage to Walter 
TurnbuU, schoolmaster at Melrose. Turnbull sold the land to 
Dr Douglas, from whom it was purchased by Scott in 181 1, and 
he sent the following letter acknowledging receipt of the pay- 
ment of the last instalment of the purchase money, — 

205 



206 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



''June, 1818. 
Drar Doctor, 

I received the discharged bill safe, which puts an end to our 
relation of debtor and creditor, &c. I am glad you have been satisfied with 
my manner of transacting business, and have equal reason at least to thank 
you for your kindly accommodation as to time and manner of payment. In 
short, I hope our temporary connection forms a happy contradiction to the pro- 
verb, * I lent my money to my friend, I lost my money and my friend.' 

Believe me, 
With great sincerity. Dear Sir, your obliged servant, 
Abbotsford, Monday, (Signed) Walter Scott. 



Abbotsford in 181 2. 



In regard to the appearance of Cartleyhole when it was 
acquired by Scott, Lockhart states, — 

**The farm consisted of a rich meadow or haugh along the bank of the 
river, and about one hundred acres of undulating ground behind, all in a 
neglected state, undrained, wretchedly enclosed, and much of it covered with 
nothing better than native heath. The farmhouse itself was small and poor, 
with a common kailyard on one flank, and a staring barn of the Doctor's 
erection at the other; while in front appeared a filthy pond covered with ducks 
and duckweed." 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 207 

Such was the original condition and appearance of the 
buildings which have been supplanted by that ** romance in 
stone and lime/* toward which thousands of pilgrims turn their 
steps to gaze on the dwelling-place and scenes rendered classic 
by the genius and talent of Sir Walter Scott, 

Dr Douglas was always on intimate terms with the laird 
of Abbotsford and they frequently visited each other, he being 
the minister alluded to in Paul's Letters to his Kinsfolk. 
When Scott was travelling in France in 181 5, he addressed 
a long letter to Dr Douglas regarding the religion of that 
country. 

The following letter is undated, but serves to show the 
intimate nature of the relations that existed between the great 
novelist and the parish minister of Galashiels, — 

Mr Dear Doctor, 

Receive my best thanks for your kind attention in sending me 
the Roman curiosity. It is, I believe, a sacrificing vessel from which the 
wine was poured on the brow of the victim, so it is to a hobby-horsical 
antiquary omen faustum felixque, I shall write to give the man some reward, 
and if anything else should be found, the finder may rely I will pay the 
full value. 

I am sorry my servant Purdie plagued you about the fence. If Mr 
Mercer likes to put it up, well and good; but if not, I must do it myself to 
protect a little plot of planting, and I can afterwards settle with him about 
keeping it in order. I am glad the Tweed spared my humble mounds, but I 
think I will raise them somewhat higher next summer, that I may make 
assurance doubly sure. 

Mrs Scott is flattered by the Lady of Harden that we are to meet you at 
Christmas there, when I hope we shall have as cheerful a party as our last was. 
You will be glad to hear that in the course of my searching into the planting 
round about Redfords House, I found many young oaks, in infancy tol)e sure, 
but looking thriving and hearty. I am truly sorry that you got any plague 
about the fences, as I am sure your own way and time should have been mine. 

Believe me, Dear Sir, 

Very truly yours, 
Edinburgh, 2nd December. (Signed) Walter Scott. 

P.S. — The ancient patera came just aJt the same day with an immense 
silver charger big enough to hold the head of a second St John, or a baron of 
beef, which we Presbyterians hold better than a relique. It is a present from 
my brethren, the Clerks of Session." 



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2o8 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

This letter was ^^ franked/' according to the manner 
customary at the time, to save the cost of postage, and was 
addressed, — 

''Thb Rev. Dr Douglas, 

Favoured by Mr Charles Erskinb." 

The dilapidated condition of the church now caused Dr 
Douglas to draw the attention of the heritors to the necessity of 
something being done towards its improvement. He stated that 

''During the last two winters the congregation had made frequent and 
loud complaint of the church being cold, damp, and uncomfortable, and that 
several entertained suspicion of its being unsafe, and that it was extremely 
incommodious both for the speaker and hearers, being seventy-five feet long 
and scarcely eighteen feet wide." 

It was furnished with lofts or galleries, as one entry in the 
Session records mentions that the sum of ;^i2 Scots was paid 
for the repair of **one of the common lofts and the stairs thereto." 

John Smith of Darnick was appointed to examine the 
building, and he reported that 

"The church was dangerous, unhealthy, and totally unfit for divine 
service. The front wall of the house, owing to the spurring of the roof, was 
considerably off the plumb^ all the other walls being more or less so, none of 
them were straight, but bulged and twisted in many places, and much wasted 
and decayed, the rain penetrating through the walls, rendering the whole 
insufficient and dangerous. The floor was also twenty inches below the 
level of the churchyard, consequently the church was very damp. Access 
could not be got to the roof, but from the appearance outside without doubt 
it also was much decayed, the timbers being considerably bent in and the 
surface unequal." 

Notwithstanding this report on the disgraceful condition of 
1812 the building, the heritors did nothing till 181 2, when Dr Douglas 
applied to the Presbytery, and at length they came to the 
resolution to build a new church. The plans were prepared by 
Mr Smith of Darnick, and Messrs Sanderson & Paterson, 
Buckholmside, undertook to complete the church and tower, 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 209 

including boundary walls, for the sum of ^^1305. When the 
new church was erected, the old building in the churchyard was 
removed, and the jougs which were affixed to the side of the 
church door were, about 1850, presented by Adam Paterson 
to the Antiquarian Society in Edinburgh, where they can still be 
seen. 

Previous to the erection of the new church, the condition 
of the manse had been quite in keeping with the old building. 
Complaint was now made by Dr Douglas that 

*'The snow was drifting through the roof, the ground floor being covered 
with water, the old part of the building being uninhabitable. In consequence 
of having been built with clay the walls were so hungry as to admit damp and 
air, the joists and floors together with a considerable part of the roof were 
rotten, the windows, doors, and stairs being also much wasted, admitting a 
cold sifting wind into every room. It was unsafe, and so unhealthy that both 
he and his wife had suffered a good deal of trouble caused by the state of the 
manse, and having secured another house in the village, he expected the 
heritors would take advantage of his absence to have the cause of his com- 
plaints removed.*' 

The heritors evidently found that the repair of such a 
ruin was impossible, and they came to the conclusion to erect a 
new manse from plans prepared by Mr Smith, at the estimated 
cost of ;^645, the contractors being Thomson & Paterson, of 
Galashiels. 

The liability of the parochial schoolmaster either to officiate 
in the precentor's desk or find a substitute now required 
settlement. Hitherto the schoolmaster had paid twenty shillings 
annually for a suitable person. On the advent of Robert 
Fyshe, however, he demurred to this payment, and as the 
duty had formed no part of his agreement it was resolved to 
pay Mr Watson, the precentor, the sum of £2 annually while he 
officiated. This arrangement did not continue long, as when 
Mr Watson had completed fifty years' service he resigned, and 
the heritors agreed to continue his salary for the remainder of 
his life. Another change took place in consequence of the 
death of the old ** bedell,'* Robert Young. He was succeeded 

N 



aio HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

by James Rodger, whose emoluments were fixed at the following* 
rates, — For digging a grave, is 6d; for mortcloth, 6d; for a 
marriage and baptism, 3d each, besides a salary of 20s annually 
paid by the Kirk Session. 

The beneficent effects of the ministry of Dr Douglas were 
not confined to the parish, as by his exertions the county library 
at Selkirk was founded. The inhabitants of that burgh grate- 
fully recognised his services by presenting him with his portrait, 
painted by Raeburn, which is now in the possession of R. D. 
Thomson, a grandson, living in Edinburgh. Two replicas were 
taken of this portrait, one of which is in Selkirk, and the other 
hangs in the Galashiels Public Hall. 

1 8 19 In the month of May, 18 19, Dr Douglas had finished his 
life's work, and the shadows of evening had gathered around 
him when he appeared for the last time in the pulpit to deliver 
his farewell sermon. This affecting scene is thus described by a 
spectator, — 

* * I was present when the doctor preached his farewell sermon to his 
flock, most of whom he had baptised, and never shall forget the scene. One 
of his daughters had been lately married to a neighbouring minister, and the 
old blind man was guided by them to his wonted place, after which the simple 
service began. The ordeal he bore with fortitude till he had to speak in his 
own person, and to the occasion, when his voice failed him. He groped back 
over his subject and fragments of his thoughts found their way into words, but 
repetitions and incoherences brought his children around him. Then he was 
borne back to his own familiar seat amid the tears and blessings of his flock, 
and the service was concluded by his son-in-law. " 

Though he lingered for over a year, yet life was not desir- 
able. He was blind and had lost the use of his limbs, and his 
mind was impaired. But his work was finished, he had nobly 
played his part in the battle of life, and he entered into his rest 

1820 on the 15th November, 1820, in the seventy-third year of his age. 

Little more need be said regarding him ; it is hardly necessary 
to describe his character. He was a man of eminent shrewdness, 
foresight, and benevolence. Nor was he less distinguished for 
his tolerance and freedom from bigotry. He visited the houses 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 211 

Qf Dissenters as well as those of his own people, and the 
testimony of a Seceder of the strictest denomination is to the 
effect that the Doctor never omitted to visit his cottage, and with 
his accustomed urbanity would say, ** I know you do not belong 
to my congregation, but that is no reason why I should not 
come in and have a chat with you, ask how you are getting on, 
and see if I cannot be in any way useful to you." 

Such was Dr Douglas, at once the pastor and father of his 
people. He sleeps in the old churchyard, **no storied urn or 
animated bust " marks the spot, only a plain tombstone bearing 
the inscription, **In memor)'^ of Robert Douglas, D.D., for fifty 
years minister of Galashiels, ordained 19th July, 1770, died 15th 
November, 1820.'* So be it; he requires no epitaph, his works 
speak for him, and as long as Galashiels stands his name will 
be held in grateful remembrance as the chief contributor to the 
building up of its prosperity and fame. 

In 1784 Dr Douglas married Robina, daughter of Dr 
Lothian, Edinburgh, by whom he had a family of seven. His 
wife died ist October, 1837, aged eighty-two. Two sons, John 
and Edward, died in infancy; Robert died in 1809; Helen, 
wife of the Rev. John Thomson of Maxton, died 14th February, 
1 831; George died at Glasgow in 1846; Beatrice died at 
Kelso, 28th December, 1850; and Arabella died at Edinburgh, 
27th June, 1876. 

Miss Arabella, the last survivor of the family, left a legacy 
of ;^5oo for the erection of a memorial window to the memory of 
her father in St Paul's Church, Galashiels. The subject is the 
Good Samaritan, suggestive of Dr Douglas's philanthropy and 
benevolence of disposition. The window bears the following 
inscription: — *'Luke x,, 30-37; Matthew xxv., 40: *Verily I say 
unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of 
these My brethren, ye have done it unto Me.' In memory of 
Robert Douglas, minister of Galashiels, 1 770-1 820. Erected by 
his daughter Arabella." 



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CHAPTER IX. 

THE Rev. Nathaniel Paterson was the next incumbent. 
He was born in the parish of Kells, Kirkcudbrightshire, 
in 1787, being the eldest son of Walter Paterson, stone- 
cutter, Balmaclellan. His grandfather was Robert Paterson, 
who was immortalised by Sir Walter Scott, as the prototype of 
** Old Mortality." After Mr Paterson left college, where he 
supported himself by private teaching, he went to reside at 
Auchenbowie as tutor to the family of Monroe Binning, where 
he remained for six years. The next two years were spent 
at Dalmeny, where he filled a similar position in a boarding 
school. Having no immediate prospect of a settlement, he 
accepted a tutorship in Northumberland. On the death of Dr 
Douglas, the patron, Mr Scott of Gala, wrote to his uncle, 
Monroe Binning, in whose family Mr Paterson had been tutor, 
asking if he could recommend some first-rate man for the 
vacancy. Mr Binning at once named Mr Paterson, but the 
congregation refused to accept him, regarding it as a case of the 
uncle getting the nephew to pension ofl^ a discarded tutor. 

His first public appearance as a preacher was unfortunate 
and did nothing to allay the popular feeling against him. He 
thus recounts his experience, — '*On my first preaching at 
Galashiels, I was sick after breakfast, and actually fell asleep an 
hour before the bell rang. Both the precentor and the beadle 
sympathised, the former saying, * When I have to sing in that 
kirk I can take no breakfast,' the latter, 'The first time I rang 
that bell I didna ken which end o' me was up.' '' At length in 
1 82 1 1 82 1 a settlement, which might be called violent, was effected, 
but eventually the result justified Mr Scott's choice. Soon the 
church was crowded, a new gallery was erected, which was 
speedily filled, and during the twelve years of Mr Paterson's 
ministry the number of communicants was doubled. 

212 



III ^ 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. ai3 

In those days it was customary to baptise the children at 
home and drink to the health of the new arrival. After the 
ceremony mirth grew fast and furious, quite out of keeping 
with the nature of the ordinance. Mr Paterson set his face 
against this custom, and induced the Session to pass a 
resolution that, in the absence of a sufficient reason, baptism 
would only be administered in the church. At that time Mr 
Paterson regarded the ministry as merely a profession, but 
after being settled for about three years, his views underwent a 
thorough change, which, although not precisely sudden, was 
none the less great and decided. As time went on, he became 
more earnest, devoting much of his time to pastoral visitation. 
He was constant in his attendance upon the sick, and visited 
every member of his congregation at least once a year. He was 
fond of out-door exercise, and spent some of his leisure time in 
planting trees upon the Gala estate. In 1825 he married 
Margaret, daughter of Robert Laidlaw of The Peel, who 
was a great friend of Sir Walter Scott. Mr Paterson was also 
a welcome guest at Abbotsford, but finding that his invitations 
were always for the Saturday, which interfered with his pulpit 
preparation, he wrote to Sir Walter, who afterwards invited him 
earlier in the week. On the occasion of laying the foundation 
stones of the bridges over the Tweed and Ettrick in 1831, Sir 
Walter wrote in his diary, **The day was beautiful and the 
people in good spirits and good humour. Mr Paterson of 
Galashiels made a most excellent prayer.'' When he was laid 
aside from active work in consequence of bad health, he utilised 
part of his time in writing that highly esteemed work. The 
Manse Garden. 

After the passing of the Reform Bill in 1832 an incident 
occurred which aflFected Mr Paterson greatly. When the election 
for the county took place, he voted according to his convictions 
for the Tory candidate, and for so doing he was assailed by the 
mob. Their hisses and yells would not have disturbed him, 
but he had to endure a greater indignity, he was actually spat 
upon in his own church. If such treatment had made him di$- 



^14 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

satisfied with Galashiels, a call to St Andrew's Church, Glasgow, 
fixed his resolution. He accepted the call, but was not allowed 
to leave without a tangible and pleasing token testifying to the 
general regard in which he was held. The ladies belonging the 
parish presented him with a silver salver, upon which the town's 
arms and the following inscription were engraved: — ^^The 
Rev. N. Paterson having for a period of twelve years faithfully 
and zealously discharged his various and important duties as 
minister of the Gospel in Galashiels, this piece of plate is 
presented by the ladies of that town and vicinity. Galashiels, 
Dec. 1833.'' The presentation was made by Mrs Robert 
Haldane and Mrs Henry Sanderson. But a still stronger proof 
of attachment was shown by the inhabitants when he left 
the town. There was no railway then, and the stage coach 
which ran between Jedburgh and Edinburgh drove up to the 
manse for the minister and his family, who took their seats 
inside. Mr Paterson sat on the outside of the coach, and 
all the way through the town the people turned out to give him 
a parting cheer. 

In 1837 Mr Paterson obtained the degree of Doctor of 
Divinity from the University of Glasgow, his congregation 
paying the dues, and at the same time, in honour of the occasion, 
presented him with a piece of plate. At the Disruption in 
1843 he cast in his lot with the Free Church, and occupied a 
place in that historic procession between St Giles* and Tanfield 
Hall. ^^It was a grand sight,** said a lady to him shortly after- 
wards. ^*Aye,** he drily replied, ^^to look at.** In 1844 he 
was settled in Free St Andrew*s, Glasgow, and in 1850 he was 
chosen to fill the Moderator's chair in the General Assembly. 
His wife died in 1864, and he died on the 25th April, 187 1, 
in the eighty-fourth year of his age, at Helensburgh, whither 
he had retired, leaving a family of four sons and three daughters. 

Mr Paterson contributed the article on the Parish of 
Galashiels to the New Statistical Account^ published in 1833, 
which contains much valuable and interesting information 
regarding the town at that transition period in its history. The 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. :2is 

Manse Garden was published three years after Mr Paterson left 
Galashiels. The garden in question was in existence before 
his settlement there, but it had nearly returned to a state of 
nature when he planted and beautified it in no ordinary degree. 
Mr Paterson was an enthusiastic angler, and to a corres- 
pondent in Canada he thus writes, — 

'* You write of streams and waterfalls, rocky pools, and, of course, noble 
fish. I thought I should like to visit you, and go where basket lids cannot 
get down for projecting tails. I must own, however, that your splendid 
success recalled to my mind a long-forgotten anecdote. A Galashiels man 
had been out at Tweed with the deadly salmon roe, and the flood being highly 
favourable, he had succeeded to his own astonishment. But home he cannot 
go without visiting on his way the crack fisher of the town, in order to exhibit 
his amazing treasure, doubtless expecting a high compliment to his skill. 
But what was the response on seeing the grand sight? * Eh, man! if I had 
been there mysel'.' " 

During Mr Paterson's term of office the stipend was raised 
to fifteen chalders, with £^^ 6s 8d for Communion elements* 
On the average for the past ten years the stipend amounted to 
;^242, IIS gd. The glebe consisted of something under six 
acres of good land, and the proprietors of Lindean and Bridge- 
haugh paid nine bolls three firlots of barley, Linlithgow 
measure, as the annual rent of the glebe lands lying within these 
estates. 



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CHAPTER X. 

THE next incumbent was the Rev. James Veitch, who was 
born on the 27th April, 1808, at Inchbonny, near 
Jedburgh. Mr Veitch studied at the University of 
Edinburgh, and became a licentiate in 1830. For the next 
four years he was tutor in the family of Plummer of Sunderland 
Hall, and it was through the influence of Miss Plummer that he 
1834 was presented to the living of Galashiels in 1834 by John Scott 
of Gala. 

His ministry there lasted only for six years, but during that 
time he acquired the reputation of being a great preacher. The 
church was always crowded, forms having to be used to supple- 
ment the pews, and even the pulpit stairs were occupied with 
admiring listeners. During the period of his ministry the 
Session consisted of three members, viz.: — ^James Leitch, Lin- 
dean; James Bathgate and George Tacket, Galashiels. 

In 1836 the heritors considered that a new church bell 
was necessary, and they decided to procure one twenty-four 
inches in diameter, to weigh 336 lbs., at a cost of jCsy. Mr 
Craig, however, objected on the ground that the old bell, which 
had been put up at Mr Scott of Gala's expense, was sufficient. 
It was at length agreed that it should be used in the material 
required for the new one, and a deduction made from his share 
of the cost, according to the weight of the metal. The new 
bell was prepared and hung in the tower of the church, it being 
inscribed ''Thomas Mearns of London, Founder, 1836.*' 

The old bell referred to by Mr Craig would be procured 
in 1617, when the first church was built. On account of being 
cracked, it was recast, the inscription put upon it at that time 
being ''John Meikle, Fecit^ Edinburgh, for Gallashiels, 1695.'* 
For some unexplained reason the old bell was not used, but 
thrown aside as lumber. At length it came into the possession 

216 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. ai; 

of William Watson & Sons, Hawick, and now does duty as a 
factory bell for that firm. 

Thus the old bell, the familiar tone of which had for over two 
hundred years called together the forefathers of the hamlet to 
bow the knee in their humble house of prayer, which had given 
voice to the joys and sorrows of succeeding generations of men 
and women who had played their little parts and were at length 
laid to sleep in the kirkyard, was carried off, and, 

'* Lost in the changes and manners o' men, 
Nane to remember ne'er ane to ken, 
That a joyfu* jowl and a waefu' knell 
As it swung, hae been rung by the auld kirk bell." 

When in Galashiels, Mr Veitch was somewhat of a recluse, 
being seldom seen except on the Sabbath. So much of his 
time was occupied in preparation for the pulpit that little was 
left for visitation, though he was always attentive in cases of 
sickness and distress. He took a warm interest in the religious 
education of the young, and was the first parish minister in 
Galashiels who commenced a Sabbath school. In this scheme he 
was opposed by his Session, who considered it would be an 
interference with the Sabbath school carried on by the Rev. 
James Henderson of the Secession Church. However, he 
persisted, and on the opening day 200 scholars attended. Mr 
Veitch was of a retiring disposition, and seldom took part 
in Church Court business. At length his health gave way, and 
he was constrained tp seek some quieter sphere of labour. In 
1840 he was presented to Newbattle by John, Marquis of 
Lothian, and, before leaving Galashiels, he received a gold 
watch as a mark of respect and gratitude, and as a tribute to 
his unwearied zeal for the spiritual welfare of his parishioners. 

He was not suffered to remain long in his new sphere of 
labour, and after refusing several calls, he accepted a presenta- 
tion to the second charge of St Cuthbert's, Edinburgh, in 1843. 
Here he maintained his reputation as a preacher, and notwith- 
standing the secession of the Free Church party, the congre- 
gation increased. 



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2ia HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

In 1854 ^h^ degree of Doctor of Divinity was conferred 
upon him by the University of Glasgow, and he was appointed 
convener of the Foreign Mission Scheme. He was offered the 
Chair of Divinity in the University of Edinburgh, which he 
declined. The Moderatorship of the General Assembly was also 
refused as he shrank from occupying such a public position. In 
1878 his health visibly declined, and he resigned his charge in St 
Cuthbert's after having occupied it for thirty-five years. In 
the following month of October he visited Galashiels for the last 
time and renewed some of his old friendships. He died on the 
nth April, 1879, in the seventy-first year of his age. 

When Mr Veitch was translated to Newbattle he was 
succeeded by the Rev. Kenneth M'Leay Phin, who was a son of 
the manse, having been born in 18 16 at Wick, where his father 
was parish minister. He received his education at the University 
of Edinburgh and was licensed to preach the Gospel in 1837. 
1 84 1 In 1 841 he was presented by Mr Scott of Gala to the parish of 
Galashiels, where he continued for the following twenty-nine 
years. 

He was a faithful minister and very diligent in the perform- 
ance of his pastoral work. Gifted with a powerful memory and 
a frank disposition, he became intimately acquainted with all his 
parishioners. Both in the inferior Church Courts and the 
General Assembly he soon began to make his mark. In 1862 
he was presented to the first collegiate charge of South Leith, 
but, after preaching his trial discourses', he was objected to by 
a party in the congregation, including the minister of the second 
charge. In these circumstances he voluntarily withdrew in the 
interests of peace, and the presentation was departed from. 

In 1863 Mr Phin was appointed to the convenership of the 
Army and Navy Chaplain Committee, the duties of which he 
discharged with much tact and success. In 1869 he received the 
degree of Doctor of Divinity from the University of Edinburgh, 
and was appointed convener of the Home Mission Scheme. 
Under his care no scheme of the Church was better managed; he 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 219 

showed in its administration an impartiality, a judiciousness, and 
a business capacity which earned for him the approbation of the 
whole Church. In order to fulfil the duties in the manner he 
considered necessary, he felt compelled to resign his charge in 
1870 Galashiels, which he did in 1870, breaking many ties formed 
during his long pastorate. On leaving, he was presented with 
his portrait, painted by Robert Herdman, R.S.A., inscribed: — 
*' Presented to Dr Phin by the parishioners of Galashiels as a 
token of their high esteem for him as their pastor and friend for 
a period of thirty years, on the occasion of the resigning of his 
pastoral charge to devote his gratuitous services to the schemes 
of the Church of Scotland — 1871.'* 

Dr Phin removed to Edinburgh, where he devoted himself to 
the Home Mission Scheme and general work of the Church. 
Though not personally approving of the introduction of instru- 
mental music in public worship, he was one of the framers of the 
Declaratory Act of 1866 which now regulates such matters. In 
1877 he was raised to the Moderator's Chair, which he occupied 
with dignity and credit. Shortly afterwards Dr Phin was 
appointed convener of the business committee of the General 
Assembly, which made him practically leader of the house. It 
was on this footing that in the course of 1887 he was one of the 
deputation to Westminster Abbey to represent the Church of 
Scotland at the Jubilee celebration, and also one of the smaller 
deputations who were received by the Queen at Windsor. 

For many years Dr Phin took a warm interest in the 
University of Edinburgh and he sat for some time in the 
University Court as Assessor for the General Assembly. He 
was suddenly cut off in January, 1888, in the seventy-second 
year of his age, in the midst of his usefulness. His mental 
power was unabated, and his bodily vigour unimpaired. He died 
full of years and honours, lamented by the Church of which 
he had been at once an ornament and support. 



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CHAPTER XL 

WHEN Dr Phin resigned his charge in 1870, he was 
succeeded by the Rev. Paton J. Gloag, D.D. Dr 
Gloag was born at Perth on 17th May, 1823. He 
attended the Universities of Edinburgh (1840-43) and St Andrews 
(1843-46.) He became minister of Dunning in Perthshire in 
1 87 1 1848, Blantyre in i860, and Galashiels on 20th April, 1871. 

When Dr Gloag was inducted to the parish of Galashiels, 
there were three former ministers of the parish alive, viz.: — Dr 
Nathaniel Paterson, Dr Phin, and Dr Veitch, the last of whom 
introduced him to the congregation. Dr Gloag's ministry was 
marked by singular faithfulness, energy, and method. He took 
a warm interest in every movement that had for its object the 
welfare and benefit of the inhabitants of the town. 

It was during Dr Gloag*s ministry that the new manse was 
erected in 1872 at a cost of over jC^SOO. After his removal, 
the old manse was acquired by William Haldane, who con- 
ferred upon it the name of The Grange, and it still retains 
all the attraction it enjoyed in the time of the author of Tke 
Manse Garden^ over sixty years ago. St PauFs Church was 
also erected within the same period, being commenced in 1876. 
It was opened for public worship on the 23rd November, 1881. 
The building, organ, &c., cost nearly ^17,000, which, with the 
exception of a grant of J^i'joo from the Baird Trust, was 
defrayed by the congregation. 

It is, however, chiefly as a theological writer that Dr Gloag 
is known. Before he came to Galashiels he was recognised as 
a laborious student, and had already given proof of ripe scholar- 
ship and ability. The University of St Andrews, recognising his 
eminence as a scholar, conferred upon him in 1867 the degree 
of Doctor of Divinity. After a faithful service extending to 
twenty-one years, he resigned on account of failing health in 189a. 

220 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 221 

Dr Gloag belongs to the positive critical school, and, 
though not afraid of the speculative conclusions of other writers, 
has been careful to endorse no opinion that does not com- 
mend itself to a careful exegesis and a sober judgment. He is 
the author of the following works: — The Assurance of Salvation 
(1853, second edition 1869), Jtcstification by Faith (1856), 
Primeval World] or. Relation of Geology to Revelation (1859), 
The Resurrectio7i (1862), Translation of Lee hlers Commentary 
on Acts in the Lange series (1864), Practical Christianity 
(1866), Translation of Meyer on Acts (1877), The Messianic 
Prophecies (Baird lectures, 1879), Translation of Lunemann on 
Thessalonians (1880), Translation of Hut her on James and 
Jude (1881), Life of Paul (Bible primer, 1881), Commentary on 
James in Schaff's Popular Commentary (1883), Exegetical 
Studies (1884), Commentary on the Epistle to the Thessalonians 
in the Pulpit Commentary (1887), Life of John (Bible primer, 
1892), besides articles in reviews and other periodicals. 

But while Dr Gloag has won laurels in almost all depart- 
ments of Biblical scholarship, he has taken a position in the 
front rank for his able, comprehensive, and scholarly volumes on 
New Testament introduction. This series was begun in 1870 
by the publication of the two volumes, A Critical and Exeget- 
ical Comfnentary on the Acts of the Apostles^ a work which 
embraces introduction as well as exegesis. In 1876 appeared 
his Introduction to the Pauline Epistles^ in 1887 Introduction 
to the Catholic Epistles ^ in 1891 Introduction to the Johannine 
Writings^ and in 1895 Introdiiction to the Synoptic Gospels. 

Dr Gloag was Baird lecturer in 1869, in 1889 he was elected 
Moderator of the General Assembly, and in 1896 he was appointed 
interim Professor of Biblical Criticism in Aberdeen University. 

Dr Gloag was succeeded by the Rev. David Hunter, D.D., 
1892 who was indticted in December, 1892. 

Dr Hunter belongs to an old Ayrshire family whose name 
has been on historical record for centuries. He was born in 1850 
in the Newtown of Ayr, and received his early education at the 
Newtown Academy. In 1868, he entered the University of 



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222 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Glasgow as first bursar, and distinguished himself greatly in the 
Arts course, taking a foremost place in all his classes. He 
gained several prizes open to the University, graduating as 
Master of Arts with honours in classics and highest honours in 
philosophy, being also awarded the Armagh Scholarship and the 
Luke Fellowship, as the most distinguished graduate of his year. 
In the Divinity Hall he was no less successful, as, in addition 
to class prizes, he secured the Rae Wilson and the Cleland gold 
medals for essays in theology, the Henderson prize for sermon 
composition, the Findlater Scholarship and the Black Fellowship 
for eminence in Biblical Criticism. He also graduated as a 
Bachelor of Divinity; and, at the close of his theological studies 
in Glasgow, went abroad for a year, where he attended lectures 
in the Universities of Tubingen and Leipsic. 

In 1877 he was licensed by the Presbytery of Ayr, and 
thereafter was appointed assistant to the Rev. Dr McGregor of 
St Cuthbert's, Edinburgh. Toward the close of that year he 
accepted a call to be assistant and successor in the parish of 
Kelso, where he was ordained on the 23rd January, 1878. 
While there, he continued his theological studies, and translated 
several works from the French and German. 

In 1882 he accepted a call to the church of St Mary's, 
Partick, where, in addition to the duties of the ministry, he 
served for some time on the Govan School Board. He also 
took an active interest in matters affecting the University, and 
was complimented by the University Commissioners for the value 
of his suggestions and his evidence regarding University reform. 

In 1890, he was appointed by the General Assembly to 
preach before the Lord High Commissioner in St Giles' 
Cathedral, Edinburgh. In 1892 he received the degree of 
D.D. from the University of Glasgow, and in the same 
year he accepted a call to Galashiels, where he continues to 
minister in the Parish Church and St Paul's, proving a 
worthy successor to the able and talented men who, in their day 
and generation, have occupied the pulpit of the Parish Church 
of Galashiels, 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 223 

Galashiels Free Church. 

The original members of this congregation belonged to the 
Parish Church of Galashiels. At the Disruption in May, 

1843 1843, they **came out/* and the roll of the new congregation 
contained the names of one hundred and fifty-eight members and 
fifty adherents. The seceding party acquired the Salmon Inn 
ball-room as a temporary place of worship, where the first 
service in connection with the new denomination was held 
on the 28th May, 1843, being conducted by a probationer 
named William Scott. Mr Scott's services were continued 
for some time, and met with so much approval that the con- 
gregation resolved to call him to be their minister. They 
found, however, to their regret, that he had accepted a call to St 
Mary's, Glasgow. Afterwards a call was given to the Rev. 
Thomas Watters, Moffat, who accepted it; but, through the 
influence of the committee in Edinburgh, he resigned and went 
to Lauder. In consequence of negotiations with a view to union 
with Ladhope Free Church, no further steps were taken in the 
meantime to fill the vacancy, till, these proving fruitless, the 
congregation gave a call to the Rev. Robert Burns Nicol, which 
he accepted, and was ordained in 1844. 

A site for a church had been secured on the east side of the 
Market Square at a cost of £120^ upon which was erected a 
building, seated for 500, at a cost of ;£l^500. The new church 

1844 was opened on the third Sabbath of April, 1844, by the Rev. 
Nathaniel Paterson, the former parish minister, who had also 
thrown in his lot with the Free Church party. Thus within 
twelve months the congregation had provided themselves with a 
church and minister, the manse not being built till 1848. 

Mr Nicol's pastorate continued for nearly twenty years, 
though during that time he was frequently obliged to leave his 
work and seek rest, and latterly it was found necessary to 
provide him with the services of an assistant. In 1861 
the Rev. James Selkirk was appointed colleague and succes- 
sor, and occupied that position till Mr Nicol died on the 
1863 29th June, 1863. Mr Selkirk continued till 1873, when he 



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224 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



accepted a call from the East Free Church, Aberdeen. During- 
his ministry the need for a larger church had become clamant, 
but rather than enlarge the old building the congregation 
resolved to procure a site on which a church could be erected 
more in accordance with modern requirements. Accordingly, the 
present site was secured, and, after the settlement of the Rev. 
William Whyte Smith in 1873, a suitable edifice was erected by 
Adam Herbertson & Son. In 1875 the church, which was 
seated for 730 and cost over jCsooOj was opened for public 
worship by the Rev. Dr Begg. 

After ministering to the congregation with great acceptance 
for twelve years, Mr Smith received a call from the Newington 
Free Church, Edinburgh, as successor to Dr Begg, and removed 
from Galashiels in March, 1885. 

The Rev. William Simpson Matheson was ordained to the 
vacant charge in May of the same year. Mr Matheson is the 
second son of the Rev. John Matheson of the Presbyterian 
Church, Hampstead, London, whose ancestors for generations 
have been ministers in Scotland. 



CHAPTER XIII. 

West Parish Church. 

1868 f I ^HIS place of worship was erected in 1868 to meet the 
I requirements of the rapidly-increasing population in that 
part of the town who could not find accommodation in 
the already over-crowded Parish Church. The movement to 
erect the church was initiated and carried through by Robert 
Sanderson, Knowepark; and Arthur Dickson, Wheatlands. The 
original building cost over ;^I300, the site being held in free 
blench. During the earlier period of its existence, when it was 
a Chapel of Ease to the Parish Church, the pulpit was supplied 
by the Rev. Kenneth M. Phin, the minister of Galashiels, who 
preached alternately with his assistant. Rev. R. Rankin, B.D. 
On the retirement of Dr Phin in 1870, the congregation, with 
the concurrence of the Presbytery, supported by the Galashiels 
Kirk Session, resolved to choose a minister for themselves. They 
accordingly elected the Rev. Richard Morris Stewart to be their 
first minister, under whom progress was continued, and in 1873 
an effort was made to raise funds towards endowment, which 
was followed by the erection of the church into a parish. The 
proposal to mark out and designate a district to be attached 
thereto Quoad Sacra and to disjoin such district from the parish 
of Galashiels was approved of by the Presbytery of Selkirk on the 
30th December, 1873. The Presbytery also gave their consent 
to the application which was about to be made to the Teind 
Court by Robert Sanderson and others, and on the 9th 
April, 1874, the Lords declared in favour of the petition in all 
respects. The boundaries of the parish are as follows, — 

** Commencing at, but not including, the Victoria Buildings, in the High 
Street of Galashiels; thence following the boundaries between the counties of 
Roxburgh and Selkirk, and between the parishes Quoad Civilia of Melrose 
and Galashiels, to the point where it meets the boundary of the parish Quoad 

225 O 



226 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Sacra of Caddonfoot, near the estate of Torwoodlee; thence along the boundary 
of Caddonfoot parish, south-westward, to a point in said boundary where a 
straight line running along the centre of the street, marked D 2 H on a feuing 
plan of Gala estate, dated 1873, should meet the boundary of Caddonfoot; 
thence from the point thus fixed along said straight line to the centre of 
Galashiels mill lade; thence along the centre of the lade to the north corner 
of Messrs Roberts* property at the Waulkmillhead; thence along the centre of 
the High Street to the point at Victoria Buildings where the boundary 
commences, all as delineated in pink on the map submitted to and approved 
of by the Presbytery. " 

Along with the minister, the first Session consisted of 
Robert Sanderson, Knowepark; and Provost Hall, both having 
previously occupied similar positions in the Galashiels and 
Ladhope Kirk Sessions. 
1883 In 1883 Mr Stewart's health broke down, when he 

resigned, and the Rev. Alexander Loudon, B.D., Toward, was 
appointed in his place. Mr Loudon was born at Airdrie 
in 1856, and received his education in the first instance at 
Clarkston Academy, entering the University of Glasgow 
at the close of 1875. He graduated M.A. in 1880, and 
B.D. in 1883. During that period he acted as missionary 
for two summers at Carrick Castle, Lochgoil; and Kilmorish, 
Loch Fyne. In 1883 he was licensed by the Presbytery of 
Hamilton, and shortly afterwards was appointed minister of 
Toward, near Innellan. He remained there for the next seven 
months, when he received and accepted a call to the West 
Parish, Galashiels. In the opinion of the late Dr Phin, Mr 
Loudon was one of the ablest and most promising of the younger 
men in the Established Church, and he has fully sustained his 
character, the congregation under his ministry having grown 
from 182 to over 650. In 1887 the Young Men's Guild in 
connection with the congregation presented him with an illumin- 
ated address, and in 1892 the congregation paid him a similar 
compliment. 

In 1884 the trustees, acting on behalf of the congregation, 
purchased the house on Windyknowe which had been built by 
Robert Sanderson and Provost Hall for the residence of the 
former minister, and it became the West Parish manse. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



227 



In 1887 the necessity for an enlargement of the church 
became apparent, and in the following year additional accom- 
modation was provided for about 400 seat-holders. This scheme 
was further enhanced by the erection of a hall capable of holding 
over 300, the cost of the two combined being ;^3000; and a 
pipe organ was introduced in 1896. 



CHAPTER XIV. 



Ladhope Parish Church. 



IN consequence of the site of the town being situated in the 
parishes of Galashiels and Melrose, the inhabitants 
attended the respective parish churches to which they 
belonged. Those residing in Galashiels parish attended the 
church of that name, and the Melrose parishioners worshipped 
in Melrose Abbey. 

The original church of Melrose was one of the oldest in 
Scotland, and occupied a site on a promontory formed by the 
Tweed about a mile above Dryburgh Abbey on the opposite 
side of the river. In ancient times, when all the surrounding 
country was covered with dense forest, the site of the monas- 
tery of Old Melrose was said to have presented an open surface 
of green turf, whence it derived its name, which is compounded 
of two Celtic words, mull signifying bare, and rhos a pro- 
montory. 

In the year 635, Oswald, the Anglo-Saxon King of Nor- 
thumberland, whose dominions extended from the H umber to 
the Forth, embraced the religion of the Gospel. He prevailed 
upon several of the brethren belonging to the Culdee monastery 
of St Columba in the island of lona to come and assist in 
his endeavour to convert his subjects. He built a monastery 
and established an Episcopal See at Lindisfarne in the 
neighbourhood of his royal castle at Bamborough, one of the 
missionaries named Aidan being invested with the united offices 
of bishop and abbot. In course of time churches were estab- 
lished, one of them being Old Melrose, the first abbot of which 
was Eata, one of the twelve Saxon disciples of Bishop Aidan. 
The office of prior was filled by Boisil, better known as St Boswell, 
whose name is still perpetuated in the locality. In 839 the 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 229 

monastery was burned by Kenneth IL, King of the Scots, and, 
probably on account of the unsettled state of the country at that 
time, no effort was made by the monks to rebuild it. Before 
875, however, the buildings must have been restored to a certain 
extent, as in that year it became one of the resting-places of the 
body of St Cuthbert, who was originally a shepherd in the 
valley of the Leader. The body of the saint, which was said to 
be incorrupted, was removed from its sepulchre at Lindisfarne 
on account of the invasion of the Danes, and and was trans- 
ferred by the monks from place to place for the next seven 
years; and finally, at the Reformation, it found a resting-place 
in Durham Cathedral. In 1073, Old Melrose became the abode 
of a few monks, amongst whom was Turgot the historian, 
afterwards the Bishop of St Andrews. Acting under orders 
from their superiors, they unwillingly quitted it in 1075. 

Subsequent to this period, the few occasional notes referring 
to this building speak of it only as a chapel dedicated to St Cuth- 
bert. Before 11 36 St Cuthbert's Chapel was a dependency of 
the priory of Coldingham. In that year King David gave the 
church at Berwick in exchange for it, and annexed it to the new 
monastery which he had founded at Melrose. The chapel of St 
Cuthbert was destroyed by the English in the reign of Robert 
I., and indulgences were afterwards granted by the Bishop of 
Galloway and Pope Martin V. to all persons who should make 
a devout pilgrimage to the chapel of St Cuthbert at Old 
Melrose, or who should contribute of their substance for 
rebuilding the same. 

Memorials of the existence of the ancient monastery are 
yet to be found in the local names. The ** Chapel Knoll" still 
marks the site which the building occupied, and **The Haly 
Wheer' and **The Monk's Ford'* are familiar place names 
on the Tweed in the immediate vicinity. 
1 1 36 When King David founded the abbey of Melrose in 11 36 

it may be conjectured that his intention was to restore the 
monastery of Old Melrose, but having reason to prefer the 
present site, he transferred the old name to the new building. 



230 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The monks who inhabited the abbey of Melrose belonged 
to the Cistercian order, and were brought from the abbey of 
Rievaulxy in Yorkshire. Their number varied from sixty to 
one hundred, with nearly an equal number of lay brethren. 
The King conferred upon them the lands of Melrose, Eldun, 
Dernwic, and Gattonside, with the right of fishing in the 
Tweed on both sides of the river where it bounded their 
property, also pasturage and timber in the forests of Selkirk 
and Traquair, together with the pasturage of the lands that 
lay between Gala and Leader. Following the King's example, 
the nobles connected with the Court vied with each other in 
their gifts to the monastery, which in a short time became 
possessed of a large revenue. The abbey had the right to 
have a place for containing sixty cows and a convenient dairy 
house at Buckholm, and also ground at Whitelee where they 
might erect stalls for one hundred cows. 

Notwithstanding the letters of protection received from 
King Edward of England, the abbey suffered heavily from the 
ravages of war. The monks complained to the Scottish king 
regarding the losses they had sustained, and obtained confir- 
mation of their charters, with permission to cut down timber to the 
extent of forty oaks in the forest of Selkirk, in order to repair 
their houses. 

In 1322 King Edward invaded Scotland, but was obliged to 
retire. Intending to lodge at Melrose, he sent three hundred 
men-at-arms to prepare for his reception, but these were met 
by Lord Douglas and a party of his followers, who attacked and 
killed a number of them. For this ill-judged exploit the English 
pillaged and destroyed the monastery, reducing it to a state of 
ruin. With a view to its restoration. King Robert Bruce in 
1326 granted them a large sum of money, besides augmenting 
their revenue with considerable gifts. In 1329 he warmly 
recommended the abbey of Melrose to the favour of his son, 
intimating his desire that his heart should be entombed within 
its walls. The King died on the 7th of June following, and 
having changed his mind regarding the disposal of his heart, he 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 231 

had directed that it should be deposited in the church of the 
Holy Sepulchre at Jerusalem. James, Lord Douglas, under- 
took to fulfil this request, and with a large retinue set out for 
Palestine, with the heart of the Bruce enclosed in a silver casket. 
In passing through Spain he found the king of that country at 
war with the Saracens, and he indulged both his warlike spirit 
and religious fervour by taking an active part against the 
enemies of Christendom, when he lost his life in battle. The 
remnant of his party returned to Scotland bringing the casket 
along with them, which was entombed in the abbey of Melrose. 

In 1384 the abbey was again burned by Richard II. of 
England. It is asserted that he intended to spare it, and 
with this object caused his banner to be affixed to the gate. 
Some of his army who had remained at Melrose were slain, 
and in revenge he gave orders for its destruction. 

In 1544 it received another hostile visit from the English 
under Sir Ralph Evers and Sir Brian Latoun, and in the 
same year it was burned and demolished by an army com- 
manded by the Earl of Hertford, which laid waste the whole of 
the Merse and Teviotdale. It is probable that on account of 
the progress of the Reformation and other causes, the abbey 
was never restored from the state of ruin to which it was then 
reduced. 

At the Reformation the teinds of the parish of Melrose 
amounted to £^35^ 9s 4d besides fifty stones of butter from 
Overside of Colmslie, 340 loads of Kain peats, 340 Kain fowls 
and twenty-four capons from Threepwood, the reader receiving 
as his stipend £20 with the kirk lands. 

In 1618 a vault of rude masonry was built over part of 
the nave of the abbey, from which the ancient roof had fallen, 
and it was then fitted up as a place of worship for the parish. 

In the taxt roll of the abbey in 1630, when every pound of 
free rent was taxed to 6d Scots, Pringle of Gallowshiel for 
Sellaris Haugh (Cellarer's Haugh ? ), worth ;^20, paid £3. 
Pringle of Torwoodlee along with Cairncross of Colmslie, for 
the west side of Langlee, Allanshaws, and Wooplaw, worth 



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232 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



£15349 6s 8d, paid ;^ii, 6s 8d. Pringle of Buckholm, whose 
lands and teinds were worth ;^6i i, 6s 8d, paid ;{^i i, 6s 8d. For 
Williamlaw and teinds, worth ^^512, 3s 4d, Pringle of Buckholm 
paid jC^2j 3s 4d for feu and tack duty. Darling for Appletree- 
leaves, worth ;^6oo, paid ;^30. 

The abbey now belongs to the Buccleuch family. Walter 
Scott, Earl of Buccleuch, whose forefathers had been hereditary 
bailies of the regality of Melrose under the abbots, had a 
considerable grant of land together with the advowson of the 
Parish Church of Melrose. His descendants, about the beginning 
of the eighteenth century, acquired by purchase the remainder 
of the abbey lands included in the lordship of Melrose, which 
still form part of the extensive possessions owned by that family. 



CHAPTER XV. 

THE first Protestant minister in the church of Melrose was 
James Pont, who studied at St Andrews from 1550 to 
1554. He was appointed by the General Assembly, 
1562 2nd July, 1562, to minister the Word and sacraments till the 
next Assembly, when he was appointed minister for Lord 
Erskine, afterwards Earl of Mar and Regent. The brethren 
authorised by the Assembly, in forming Presbyteries in 1581, 
were instructed to take his advice with others in establishing 
those connected with the diocese of Dunblane. On 26th June, 
1595, the Assembly nominated him with others, 

*'To sitt in Striveling, and call before them the bretheren that has delapidat 
thair benifices within the bounds of Strivelingshyre, Stratherne, Cliddisdaill, 
Dumbartane, Renfrew, Lennox, Kyle, Carrick, Cunighame, Galloway, and 
Nithesdaill." 

He also held the office of Commissary of Dunblane from nth 
July, 1598, till his death in July, 1602. 

He was succeeded by John Knox, A.M., eldest son of 
William Knox, minister of Cockpen, and grand-nephew of the 
Reformer. He took his degree at the University of St Andrews 
in 1575, and was minister at Lauder in the following year. He 
1582 was a member of the Assemblies in 1581 and 1582, and in the 
latter year was translated to Melrose. 

James Pont was one of those who declined subscribing the 
articles written by Secretary Maitland in 1585, and was a mem- 
ber of at least twelve out of the twenty-six Assemblies during his 
incumbency. He was Moderator of the Synod in 1586 when 
they declared there was no difference of opinion among them 
regarding the policy of the Church. He was also one of the 
Commissioners named by the Privy Council, 6th March, 1589, 
for the preservation of true religion in the Sheriffdom of 
Edinburgh. In 1596 he was one of the Commissioners for the 

233 



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234 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

south appointed to meet daily with the Presbytery of Edinburgh 
and consult respecting the means necessary for opposing the 
measures of the excommunicated popish Earls and their 
supporters. In the Assembly of 1601 he refused to vote for the 
translation of ministers recommended by the King. When 
nominated Moderator of Presbytery by the Assembly of 1606, 
the Presbytery were charged by the Privy Council to receive 
him as such within twenty-four hours after notice under pain of 
rebellion. He was bold enough to refuse the office, and was 
therefore put to the horn. Again in favour, in 1608 he was 
appointed to visit the kirks of Annandale, Ewesdale, and Esk- 
dale, with the Archbishop of Glasgow. He was also a member 
of the conference at Falkland in May, 1609. At the Assembly 
in 161 7 he had the courage to admonish the Archbishop 
of St Andrews for his doctrine, and when obedience to 
the articles of Perth was urged at the Synod in 161 8, he 
exhorted the brethren to stand to the liberty and government of 
the Church as established before the appointment of bishops. 
He died in 1623, aged about sixty-eight, being one of those 
mentioned by Livingstone as "eminent for grace, gifts, faith- 
fulness, and success.'' 

The next minister was Thomas Forrester, A.M., who 
attained his degree at the University of St Andrews in 1608. 
On the loth March, 1623, he was proposed by the Archbishop 
of Glasgow for Ayr, and the Session agreed to send a 
Commissioner to show "that he was not a meet man to 
be minister among them," yet he was presented by James VI. 
on the loth April, but no further proceedings appear to have 
been taken. In 1634 the parish, covering an area of seven 
miles by four and containing about two thousand communicants, 
had a decreet of augmentation, and the Archbishops having 
declared it expedient, provision was made for a second minister, 
but this proposal was not carried out. 

Mr Forrester was a man of extraordinary character. 
While the attempt of Charles I. to complete kn Episcopal 
system of Church government in Scotland was the subject of 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 235 

violent and universal discontent, at least in the southern part 
of the kingdom, Forrester appears to have beheld it with 
the utmost gratulation and triumph, giving way to his feelings 
in occasional satires upon those who opposed the Court. 
His vein of poetry is allowed to have been of no mean 
order, and even now, when many of the allusions are unintel- 
ligible, its poignancy is sufficiently obvious. 
Eventually he was accused of avowing 

**That the service book was better than preaching, that preaching was no 
essential part of God's worship, that all prayers should be read, that he made 
his altar and rails himself, stood within and reached the elements to those who 
stood without, avowed Christ*s presence there, but whether sacramentally or 
by way of consubstantiation, he wist not. He maintained Christ's universal 
redemption, and that all in the service book was good, he used to sit at 
preaching and prayer, baptised in his own house, made a way through the 
church for his kine and sheep, made a wagon of the old Communion table to 
lead in his peats, declared that to make the Sabbath a moral precept was to 
Judaize, that upoQ it it was lawfivl to work, and * having but one hutt of 
corne in his barneyard, would needs show his Christian liberty by causing his 
servants to cart it in upon that holy day,* maintained that our confession of 
faith was faithless, kept no thanksgiving after Communion, and affirmed the 
Reformation to have brought more damage to the Church in one day than 
the Pope and his faction had done in a thousand years. 

On December nth, 1638, it is recorded that 'Thomas Foster's proces 
was given in containing many grosse and blasphemous poynts, and, after the 
calling of the rolles, the Assembly voited that such a minister should be put off 
in a singular manner, and deposed from the ministerie.' '' 

The reverend gentleman Indulged himself in a characteristic 
revenge. He composed a mock Litany containing thirty-eight 
verses, in which the most respected men of the day and the 
most solemn of their proceedings were profanely ridiculed, 
concluding with the two following stanzas, — 

'•From noble beggars, beggar makers. 
From all bold and blood undertakers, 
From hungry catchpole's knighted loons, 
From perfumed puppies and babouns. 
From caterpillars, moths, and rats. 
Horse-leeches, State blood-sucking bats, 
From such mad pranks of Catherus, 

From whom, good Lord, deliver us. 



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236 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

From Sandy Hago, and Sandy Gibsone, 
Sandy Kinnear, and Sandy Johnstone, 
Whose knaverie made them Covenanters 
To keep their necks out of the halters. 
Of falsehood, gried, what you'll name, 
Of treacherie they think na shame; 
Yet these, the mates of Catherus, 
And all the knock-down race of Knoxes 

From Avhom, good Lord, deliver us." 

Mr Forrester was succeeded by Alexander Scott, A.M., who 

1640 was admitted to Melrose in 1640, and died the same year. 

The next incumbent was David Fletcher, A. M., who 
studied at the University of St Andrews and graduated 
in 1635. On the 22nd May, 1635, he was elected by the Town 
Council of Edinburgh to the collegiate charge of St Cuthbert's. 
In 1638 he was assaulted and maltreated by several women for 
hesitating to obey the populace of the day. He was deposed 
by the Commission of Assembly on the ist January, 1639, for 
declining the General Assembly at Glasgow the preceding 
year and for reading and defending the service book, but the 
deposition was recalled by the following General Assembly. 
He was translated to Melrose, and admitted on the 4th February, 

1641 1641. When elected to St Cuthbert's he was zealous for 
Episcopacy, but when he came to Melrose he turned Pres- 
byterian. After the restoration of Charles H. he was made 
Bishop of Argyll through the influence of his brother, Sir John 
Fletcher, the King's advocate. It was during his incumbency 
that the statues in Melrose Abbey were destroyed. After 
leaving Melrose he still retained the parish in conjunction till 
his death, which occurred in March, 1665, aged about sixty. 

Alexander Bisset, A.M., who was the next minister, 
studied at the University of St Andrews in 1656, and was 
licensed by that Presbytery in 1661. He was presented by 
the master of the New College of St Andrews to Tynningham 
on the 24th September, and ordained on the 20th November, 
1663. He obtained the living of Melrose from the patron, 
1665 John, Earl of Haddington in 1665, and died in 1689. 



CHAPTER XVI. 



THE next minister was Robert Wilson, A.M., who 
took his degree at the University of Edinburgh on the 
13th of June, 165 1. He was called to Melrose and 
1690 admitted 9th September, 1690. He was a member of Assembly 
in 1692, and died 5th March, 17 13, in his eightieth year. 

During the ministry of Mr Wilson, it is stated in the 
Session records that when he came to Melrose elders were 
appointed to visit the town during the time of service to see that 
there was no drinking or profanation of the Sabbath. In 
common with the elders belonging to the Kirk of Scotland in 
those days, the Melrose Session acted faithfully in regard to their 
duties, as William Mein, blacksmith at Newstead, learned, when 
he broke the Fast Day by working at his trade. His wife also 
got into trouble over the affair by scolding the elder who had 
been making inquiry into the circumstance. Sometimes the 
parishioners themselves lent their aid and reported any occurrence 
that savoured of scandal. As Robert Mercer was on his way to 
the church one Sabbath morning, he observed some clothes 
hanging on the dykes at Easter Langlee and Westhouses. Com- 
municating his discovery to the Session, they had some of the 
people of these hamlets summoned before them in connection with 
the affair. Marion Wilson appeared from Easter Langlee and 
explained that she had a web of linen out for several nights 
together and had not taken it in on the Sabbath. Another 
female from Westhouses confessed that she had forgotten 
to take in some clothes that were hung out to dry, and both 
were privately rebuked. Henry Pringle and his wife received 
the usual admonition and rebuke for quarrelling with each other, 
Sarah Renwick also suffered a like punishment for scolding her 
neighbours, while Rpbert Clark was handed over to the magis- 
trate because he had not appeared before the Session when 

237 



238 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

requested. Helen Lithgow, spouse of Peter MoflFat, in Threep- 
wood, occasioned some trouble by calling one of the elders a 
knave when he had spoken to her about her conduct in cursing 
and swearing. She was summoned in the usual fashion, but, 

" Being very obstinate, the Session thought fit to appoint Buckholme, Thomas 
Darling, Thomas Laidlay, James Thin, John Moodie, John Riddeli, and James 
Hunter to meet on Monday at Threepwood, to pray together for her, and to 
deal with her for her amendment." 

It may be presumed that the appearance of this formidable 
deputation had the desired effect, as her name does not again 
appear. Robert Watherstone in Colmslie was found guilty of 
setting up a few sheaves on a Sabbath morning, and after 
promising to walk more Christianly in future, was rebuked and 
dismissed. But the hardest case of all was that of John Turner, 
in Hagburn, who had given offence by carrying a burden upon 
his back on the Lord*s-day. John appeared and explained that 
the burden in question was only a half-peck of oatmeal, in a case 
of great necessity his family were in, through his not being able 
to get home on the Saturday night. In consideration of this 
being John*s first offence, and upon promising not to do the like 
again, he was rebuked before the Session and absolved. 

For some time Mr Wilson was provided with an assistant 
and successor in the person of Adam Milne, A.M. He 
took his degree at the University of Edinburgh on the 7th 
July, 1698, was licensed by the Presbytery of Chirnside on 
24th September, 1706, being called to Melrose, and ordained 
171 1 colleague and successor on the 8th May, 171 1. He died on the 
8th June, 1747, aged about sixty-seven, in the thirty-seventh year 
of his ministry. It is stated in the Session records of date nth 
June, 1747, that 

*'Our worthy laborious pastor, who to the great grief and universal loss of 
the congregation departed this life, the 8th instant, was this day buried at 
three o' the afternoon." 

Mr Milne was credited with being a man of considerable talent, 
and he wrote a history of the parish of Melrose, which w^as 
published in 1743. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 239 

He was succeeded by James Brown, A.M., the youngest 
son of the Rev. John Brown, minister of Abercorn. Mr 
Brown was presented to the living at Melrose by the Lady 
^747 Isabella Scott in July, 1747, and ordained on the loth February, 
1748. He interested himself in the temporal affairs of his 
parishioners by getting a bleach-field established at Melrose 
for the purpose of encouraging the manufacture of linen in the 
parish. It was proposed to promote him to South Leith in 
1765, but he was translated to New Greyfriars', Edinburgh, on 
the 5th May, 1767. In the following year he was removed 
to the collegiate charge of the New North Church. He 
was elected Moderator of the General Assembly in 1777, and 
died on the 6th May, 1786, in the sixty-second year of his age, 
and thirty-nineth of his ministry. 

It is recorded concerning him that ** he was distinguished 
not more by his majestic appearance than by his pastoral 
excellence, powerful reasoning, and singular attention to the 
charitable institutions of the city." He took a great interest in 
the improvement of the translations and paraphrases of 
Scripture, and was appointed in 1776 convener of the Assembly's 
Committee for that purpose, and had the satisfaction in 1781 of 
seeing the selections approved of. 

Mr Brown was succeeded by Fredrick Maclagan, son of 
Alexander Maclagan, minister of Little Dunkeld, and who was 
licensed by the Presbytery of Dunkeld in 1760. He became 
assistant at Alva, and was presented to Melrose by Henry, 
1768 Duke of Buccleuch, and ordained 6th March, 1768. Rumours 
arose regarding his conduct, and a libel was raised charging 
him with adultery, from which he was assoilzied by the 
Presbytery. He, however, found it expedient in 1788 to 
retire, and he died at Hayfield, Stirlingshire, on the 12th 
August, 1 818. 

The next incumbent was George Thomson, who was 

licensed by the Presbytery of Dunblane in 1786, and was called 

to Melrose and ordained assistant and successor on the 23rd 

1788 October, 1788. An augmentation of stipend having been asked 



240 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



by the senior minister, Mr Thomson lodged a claim, that as he 
performed the whole work, his case should be considered in the 
event of the Court granting the request. Though doubts were 
entertained regarding the competency of his claim, effect was 
given to his application, and the whole augmentation was 
granted to him in 1797. During his incumbency the Parish 
Church was erected on the Weir Hill. This was done at the 
particular desire of the Duke of Buccleuch in order to preserve 
the appearance of the venerable abbey, within which divine 
service had hitherto been held. The foundation stone of the 
new church was laid by James Pringle of Torwoodlee, in 1808, 
and the building was completed in 18 10. Mr Thomson died 
in 1836, in his seventy-seventh year, and forty-eighth of his 
ministry. 

Despite the fact that Mr Thomson received the augmenta- 
tion, his income was small, and, having a wife and family, the 
hardship of his case became a subject of public conversation. 
This reached the ears of the Rev. Dr Johnston, North Leith, who 
immediately collected a considerable sum, which he enclosed to 
Mr Thomson in a letter. Mr Thomson instantly replied 
and expressed his grateful acknowledgment, but requested the 
Doctor to return to the donors every farthing which had been 
subscribed on his behalf, as he and his family were content with 
their humble fare. Besides a spirit of independence, guileless 
simplicity was another trait in his character. On one occasion 
he met a person on the road travelling towards Lauder, who was 
a total stranger, and Mr Thomson requested him to carry his 
watch to the watchmaker there for repair. As might have been 
expected, neither watch nor messenger was ever more heard of. 
He married Margaret, daughter of the Rev. Robert Gillon of 
Lessudden, who died nth June, 1831. One of their sons, 
George Thomson, was a preacher, and for some time tutor in 
the family of Sir Walter Scott. From his eccentricity and 
kindness of heart, Thomson is understood to have been the 
original of '* Dominie Sampson.'' 

The next minister was William Murray, a native of Selkirk- 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 241 

shire, who studied at the University of Edinburgh, and became 
tutor in the family of Major Hope Johnstone. He was licensed 
by the Presbytery of Langholm, and presented to the living of 
Melrose by Walter Francis, Duke of Buccleuch, and ordained 
loth June, 1836. He died on the 13th September, 1865, in his 
sixty-seventh year, and thirtieth of his ministry. 

Shortly after the induction of Mr Murray, it was found 
that the Parish Church was too small to contain the parishioners. 
This was principally owing to the growth of the population in 
that division of Galashiels comprised within Melrose parish. 
To those residing in the western portion of the parish, the distance 
from the church had proved extremely inconvenient. In these 
circumstances it was considered preferable to erect another church 
in a more suitable locality, rather than enlarge the church at 
Melrose. Accordingly, on the iSth May, 1837, the foundation- 
stone of Ladhope Church was laid with masonic honours, and 

1838 on the 1 6th July, 1838, it was opened for public worship 
by the Rev. Archibald Binnie, of Lady Yester's Church, 
Edinburgh. The church cost ^^1400, which was defrayed 
by subscription, the Duke of Buccleuch contributing ;^I05, 
besides paying the annual feu duty of £$• This was 
afterwards reduced to a nominal sum. For some months after 
the church was opened the pulpit was occupied by probationers, 

1839 till, on the 21st March, 1839, the Rev. W. P. Falconer was 
chosen as minister. He was ordained by the Presbytery of 
Selkirk on the 13th September following, the Rev. W. Murray 
of Melrose, conducting the services. At the conclusion, the 
Presbytery and friends were entertained to dinner in the Com- 
mercial Inn, where upwards of sixty gentlemen attended, 
it being recorded that **a most agreeable evening was spent, in 
perfect harmony with the solemnities of the day.'' 

Mr Falconer was born at Old Monkland, and studied at 
Glasgow University. He was first employed as assistant in his 
native place, and afterwards as missionary at Kilmarnock, where 
he was instrumental in the formation of the congregation of 
St Andrew's. 



242 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

At the Disruption in 1843 tempting offers were made to Mr 
Falconer to remain in the Established Church; but he declined, 
and, along with 371 out of a total of 420 persons whose names 
were on the Communion roll, left Ladhope and formed Ladhope 
Free Church. 

For a few years afterwards there was no settled minister in 
Ladhope, the pulpit being supplied with preachers. The 
1846 Rev. James Smith received a call and was ordained in 1846. 
Before coming to Galashiels Mr Smith had been in connection 
with the Irish Presbyterian Church, having been ordained to 
the charge at Westport, on the west coast of Connaught, which 
he resigned in 1845. During the course of his ministry in 
Galashiels, he gradually gathered a congregation around him, 
and was presented with a purse of sovereigns as a token of 
regard for the interest and attention he showed in their welfare. 
In 1857 he received a call from Greyfriars*, Aberdeen, which he 
accepted. He remained there till 1862, when Lord Aberdeen 
presented him to the vacant charge of Ellon. During his 
sojourn in that parish he had conferred upon him the dignity of 
Doctor of Divinity, and died there in December, 1871, aged 
sixty-six years. 

When Mr Smith left Ladhope he was succeeded by the 
Rev. Robert Blackstock, who belonged to Dumfriesshire. He 
came from Larbert to Galashiels, and was ordained on the 25th 
1858 June, 1858. There being no manse in connection with the 
church at that time, Mr Scott of Gala offered the congregation 
a free site and a donation of jC^Sj provided they commenced 
building within six months. The offer was accepted, and the 
manse was erected in i860. 

Under the ministry of Mr Blackstock the growth of the 
congregation was quite phenomenal. When he came to Ladhope 
there were 240 members, and in the latter years of his ministry 
the number had increased to over 1000. In 1868 this growth 
necessitated an enlargement of the church, which was completed 
at a cost of ;^700. In 1874 an organ was introduced, and as 
instrumental music in divine service was at that time con- 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 243 

sidered by many a dangerous innovation, over one hundred 
members left the church on that account. 

During his ministry in Ladhope, Mr Blackstock studiously 
refrained from taking any part in political or other questions 
which from time to time stir public feeling. He kept close to 
what he considered the proper work of the ministry. While 
his pulpit duties were not neglected, he considered his principal 
field of labour lay in the homes of the people. He was widely 
esteemed, and his popularity extended far beyond the bounds of 
his owji congregation. He set his heart on Church extension, 
and was earnestly desirous of seeing another church in the 
parish. In matters educational he was more successful, and it 
was principally to his efforts that Ladhope School owed its 
existence. 

The parish of Ladhope, which was erected Quoad Sacra 
by the Court of Teinds on nth July, 1855, was taken 
wholly from the parish of Melrose during the pastorate of 
Mr Blackstock. The petition presented to the Court was at 
the instance of William Brunton of Ladhope, John Borthwick 
of Crookston, Robert Hall, builder; Thomas Anderson, mill- 
wright; John Roberts, manufacturer; David Ballantyne, manu- 
facturer; John Hall, builder, all of Galashiels; the Rev. Kenneth 
M^Leay Phin, minister of the parish of Galashiels; William 
Rutherford, writer, there; and Professor Robertson, then con- 
vener of the Endowment Committee of the Church of Scotland. 

The endowment consists of a stipend of ^^ 120 to the minister, 
and there is a surplus of securities amounting to ;^6, 6s 5d and 
casualties valued at jCSy 17s lod for the support of fabrics, 
which, it was estimated, might amount to ;^I2 per annum. The 
securities consist of feu duties and casualties of superiority in 
Darling's Haugh, provided by local parties and the Endowment 
Committee of the Church, also an annual sum of £3 payable by 
Mr Borthwick of Crookston. 

The boundaries of the district disjoined from Melrose and 
now forming the parish of Ladhope Quoad Sacra are described 
in the decree of the Teind Court as follows, — 



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244 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

^'Beginning at the junction of the water of Gala with the river Tweed, and 
down said river Tweed to the point where the water of Allan or Elwand joins it; 
thence up the said water of Allan or Elwand to the source thereof; and thence 
in a straight line to that point where the counties of Berwick, Midlothian, and 
Roxburgh meet; thence along the boundary line between the said counties of 
Midlothian and Roxburgh, and between the parishes of Melrose and Stow to 
that point in the said water of Gala where these counties meet the county of 
Selkirk; and thence along the boundary line between the counties of Selkirk 
and Roxburgh, and between the parishes of Melrose and Stow, and Melrose 
and Galashiels, to the junction of the said water of Gala with the said river 
Tweed, at the point where the boundary commenced, but excepting from the 
said boundary that part of the farm of Easter Langlee belonging to the Right 
Hon. Lord Somerville, then occupied by G. & J. Bruce." 

In 1 88 1 Mr Blackstock accepted a call to Lilliesleaf, and 
before leaving Galashiels he was honoured by a great public 
gathering in the Volunteer Hall, when he was presented with 
a silver salver and a purse containing 200 sovereigns. He died 
at Lilliesleaf on the 24th January, 1888, in the sixty-first year of 
his age. 

The next incumbent was the Rev. Robert Borland, who was 
1881 elected on the 19th December, 1881. In June, 1883, he accepted 
a call to the kirk and parish of Yarrow. 

Mr Borland was succeeded by the Rev. W. C. Callander 
from Lochrutton, who was inducted to Ladhope on the 21st 
1884 January, 1884. During the ministry of Mr Callander large 
halls have been erected for the accommodation of the various 
organisations in connection with the church. The cost of these 
amounted to ^^2240. The halls were opened in the month of 
January, 1887, and within the following year the debt was paid 
off. Since these facilities hav^ been provided, there has 
been a marked increase in congregational activity, the minister's 
Bible class being now the largest in the town, numbering 236 
young men and women. 



Rev. Dr Blair Rev. James Spence 

Rev. Dr Henderson 
Rev. W, Whyte Smith Rev. Robert Blackstock 



246 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

in Douglas, Isle of Man. He continued there for the succeeding 
nineteen years, when failing health compelled him to resign, and 
he returned to Edinburgh, where he died on the 7th March, 1896. 

When Mr Fettes left, the congregation gave a call to the 
Rev. James Spence, who was born at Edinburgh in 1830, and 
received his education at the High School and University. In 
1862 he was elected minister of Stobhill Free Church, near 
1866 Gorebridge, and four years afterwards came to Ladhope Free 
Church. 

In 1883 the congregation resolved to erect a new church, 
and a feu in Bridge Street was obtained. The church was 
opened by the Rev. Dr Andrew Bonar on the ist October, 1885. 
It was built by Robert Hall & Co., Galashiels, and cost, 
including the site, over jCs^oo. 

The history of Ladhope Free Church was published in 1895 
under the auspices of the congregational Literary Association. 



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CHAPTER XVIII. 



Glassite Church. 



THIS church was one of the many formed during the latter 
half of the eighteenth century, and is known by the name 
of its founder, John Glass. It was stationed originally 

1768 at Darnick about the year 1768. 

The elders at Darnick were James Craw and David Byres. 
Mr Craw came from Forfarshire, and was probably connected 
with the church first formed by Mr Glass in that county. Mr 
Byres was much esteemed in the church. His portrait by 
Skirving still hangs in the Elders* Room in Edinburgh. In 1768 
the number of members on the roll was twenty-five, besides a con- 

1775 siderable auditory. About the year 1775 the church was 
transferred to Galashiels, the membership at that date having 
increased to fifty, twenty-seven males and twenty-three females. 
At that time the elders were James Craw and William White; 
and among the members were to be found a number of the 
oldest and most respected names in the town, such as Sanderson, 
Paterson, Gill, Ballantyne, Dickson, &c. Amongst the elders 
who officiated in latter years were Messrs Watson, Paton, 
Miller, and Sime; two of whom have their names perpetuated 
in Paton Street and Sime Place. In 1842 the church was 
removed from the Old Town to Botany Lane, where a new 
place of worship was erected. In recent years the congre- 
gation has had no stated place of meeting, and the few remaining 
members resident in Galashiels occasionally attend the services 
of their denomination in Edinburgh. 



547 



A' 



CHAPTER XIX. 

Baptist Church, 

1782 A S the result of a change of opinion regarding Church order 
and the administration of the ordinances on the part of 
Archibald Cochrane, Henry Watson, and William John- 
stone, this congregation had its origin in 1782. In order to find 
congenial company, they travelled to Edinburgh to attend the 
church now situated in Bristo Place, where, on profession of 
their faith, they were baptised and received into the member- 
ship. Continuing to reside in Galashiels, they, along with 
others like-minded, were wont to unite in worship and mutual 
exhortation. The elders and brethren from Edinburgh frequently 
visited them, and in this manner the doctrines they professed 

1804 became known and attracted adherents. At length in 1804 Adam 
Cochrane and William Berry were called as pastors, and William 
Johnstone and James Leitch were appointed to the office of 
deacon. Originally the congregation met for worship in the 
Cloth Hall, but in the course of time they erected a place of 
worship at the west end of Overhaugh Street, which was utilised 

1842 during the week as a day school. In 1842 this building was 
disposed of, and a chapel was erected in Stirling Street. At 
that date there were forty members, the pastor being James 
Leitch, who had been called in 181 1. As time went on the 
membership increased, till in 1870 it was found necessary to 
erect the present enlarged edifice at a cost of ;^iooo, which 
sum was almost entirely defrayed by the congregation. At that 
time the membership had increased to 145. The pastors were 
Alexander Thomson and John Horsburgh. 

The church originally was a Scotch Baptist Church, 
and, in accordance with its constitution, there was a plur- 
ality of pastors. This was continued till 1875, when it was 
deemed advisable to have a salaried pastor, who could devote 

248 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 249 

all his time to the work of the ministry. A difference of 
opinion regarding this step caused a secession, and about 
seventy members, together with Pastors Thomson and Morton, 
left the congregation. Those remaining gave a call to the 
Rev. Charles Hill from Dunfermline, who became pastor and 
continued so till his death in September, 1880. The following 
year the Rev. D. Ritchie Key was appointed pastor, and he 
ministered till 1884, when he resigned his connection with 
the Baptist denomination and joined the United Presbyterian 
Church. The Rev. Henry Gray from West Hartlepool 
succeeded, but retired in 1887. The Rev. J. Bell Johnstone 
was the next pastor, who laboured with great acceptance for 
eight and a half years. When he came to Galashiels the 
membership was about 120, and on his leaving for Worcester 
1896 in 1896, it had increased to over 300. 

Mr Johnstone was succeeded by the Rev. Robert Clark from 
Belfast, who was ordained to the ministry in 1887. 

The undernoted list gives, so far as available, the names of 
the various pastors, together with the dates of their admission and 
retirement, up to 1875, when the secession took place. Adam 
Cochrane, 1804; William Berry, 1804; James Leitch, 181 1 to 1845; 
Walter Murray — to 1844; George Paterson, 1845 to 1863; James 
Berry, 1845 to 1847; John Cowan, 1847 to 1850; David Wallace, 
April to August, 1847; Alexander Thomson, 1852 to 1875; John 
Horsburgh, 1866 to 1873; Andrew Morton, 1874 to 1875. 

The following is a condensed narrative regarding the manner 
and methods of worship observed by this denomination in its 
earlier days. It is from the pen of Dr Somerville, one of the 
present deacons, and appeared in the Scottish Baptist Magazine 
for June, 1896, — 

''The Sabbath service began at 10.30 with praise. There being no fixed 
precentor, various brethren occasionally officiated, and the variety of musical 
gifts exhibited by the different leaders was not uninteresting. There was one 
esteemed brother in particular who indulged in a freedom from established 
rules, both on account of the variety and duration of his notes, that sometimes 
excited wonder if not admiration. After the singing, prayer was offered, 
being led by any brother the pastor selected. Again praise followed, at the 
conclusion of which another brother supplicated for a blessing upon the 



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250 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

reading of the Scriptures. The reading was done systematically, and occupied 
a considerable time. One chapter was read in consecutive order from the 
Old and New Testaments, and they evidently believed that all Scripture was 
profitable, as there was no omission of those particular passages which are 
generally considered unsuitable for public edification. The reading was done 
by one of the deacons, at the close of which a hymn was sung, and another 
brother was requested to pray for a blessing upon the ordinance of exhortation. 
Opportunity was then offered to any of the brethren to take part in the 
proceedings. As there was no previous arrangement, it sometimes occurred 
that there was no response. In these circumstances, with the view of filling 
up the time, one of the brethren would proceed to paraphrase a psalm, and 
after the exhortation the morning service came to a conclusion. 

An interval of an hour followed, and, as many members did not go home, 
there was provided what was termed the Move feast' In the olden time 
porter was the beverage, but latterly tea and coffee with bread and cheese 
were substituted. This meal afforded opportunity for indulging in pleasant 
social intercourse, the female portion generally indulging in a criticism of the 
merits or demerits of the exhortation to which they had recently listened. 

The afternoon service commenced at 1.30, and the same order was 
observed as in the morning, but instead of an exhortation from a brother the 
pastor delivered a sermon. At the conclusion the collection was taken, out of 
which fell to be defrayed all the necessary expenses in connection with the 
maintenance of the church, but the greater part was devoted to relieving 
the necessities of the poorer brethren. This was done in a characteristic 
spirit. The name of the recipient was not recorded; *to a poor brother' was 
considered a sufficient entry in the cash book. After the collection was 
taken the Lord's Supper was observed in all its primitive simplicity, and the 
service closed with the benediction. 

The church meetings were also characterised by plain speaking 
and faithful dealing. Some of the brethren had exalted ideas regarding the 
duty of faithfulness, and sometimes exercised it more than was wise. 
Unselfishness was one of their strong points. They could tolerate without 
flinching the beam in their own eye, but were so concerned about the mote in 
that of their neighbour that they could find no peace or rest till they had an 
opportunity of extracting it. Strict discipline prevailed, not only were moral 
failings severely rebuked, but absence from the wonted pew was quickly noted 
and dealt with, one brother considering it a great aggravation of the offence, 
and lamenting that they had actually been attending another church. 
Deputations were sent to admonish erring brethren, but it was not always 
the best method, as out of one case of discipline sometimes several would 
arise. Some brethren were unduly dictatorial and laid down what they con- 
sidered the law in a manner that admitted of no difference of opinion. On one 
occasion of this nature one worthy brother was stung into observing, * There 
were more Popes in Galashiels than have been seen in Rome for a century.' " 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



^51 



When the minority of the members decided to secede from 
the chapel in Stirling Street in 1875, they rented the old Bridge 
Inn assembly room, where for some time they met for worship 
and mutual edification. In the course of time steps were taken 
to erect a suitable place of worship. A site having been 
secured in Victoria Street, a church was built, and opened on 
15th July, 1883, which is known as the Victoria Street Baptist 
Church. 

At the present date the pastors are Messrs Alexander 
Thomson, Henry Fleming, and David Craighead. The mem- 
bership is about 150, and there are several organisations in 
connection with the congregation. 



~--t. 



T 



CHAPTER XX. 

East United Presbyterian Church. 

1805 ^ I ^HE congregation now represented by the above body was 
formed on the 12th August, 1805. The denomination with 
which it was originally connected came into existence in 

1733 under the leadership of the Erskines and others. It did not 
originate in any forced settlement in the Parish Church like many 
of the Secession churches, but in what was considered the 
doctrinal defection of the Church of Scotland. Previous to the 
rise of the local congregation, associate congregations had been 
formed at Stow and Selkirk, to which the Seceders in Galashiels 
had connected themselves. This arrangement proving very 
inconvenient, the idea of forming a church at Galashiels was 
mooted on the occasion of a baptism at Claydubs. Appli- 
cation was made to the Burgher Presbytery that the mem- 
bers petitioning should be disjoined from Stow and Selkirk, 
and formed into a separate congregation at Galashiels, This 
having been agreed to, a supply of ministers was readily granted 
by the Presbytery, the first sermon being preached in a dwelling- 
house at Buckholmside by Mr Elder of Newtown. It was 
found that the new congregation started with a membership of 
two hundred, fifty being from Stow, and one hundred and fifty 
from Selkirk. 

The first church and manse were erected in the Old Town 

1806 in 1806, a large part of the work in the way of quarrying and 
carting the material being done by the members themselves. 
What the building cost there is no record to show, but when the 
work was completed it was found that they were encumbered 
with a considerable amount of debt. 

In 1806 the congregation gave a call to the Rev. George 
Lawson, son of the Rev. Dr Lawson of Selkirk, who accepted 
the invitation, and was ordained on the 4th November of the 

252 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 253 

same year. Two years afterwards he received a call from Stow, 
which he declined; but in the following year he received another 
call from Bolton, in Lancashire, which he accepted. He after- 
wards went to Kilmarnock, and then to Selkirk, where he 
died in 1849. 

When Mr Lawson left, steps were taken to secure a 
1 8 10 successor, and on the 29th August, 1810, the Rev. James 
Henderson, from the first Burgher congregation in Stirling, was 
ordained. The stipend promised to Mr Henderson was ;^iio, 
but this sum proved more than the limited means of the congre- 
gation could afford, and years elapsed before he received more 
than ;^ioo. In June, 1814, he married Miss Isabella Hay, 
sister of Mr Hay, the associate minister at Stow. In 18 17 Mr 
Henderson opened the first Sabbath school in Galashiels, which 
was largely attended by children belonging to his own and other 
congregations. In 1830 the total income of the church was 
jCi26j 19s ii^d, and of that amount Mr Henderson received 
^^96, 13s. At this time the congregation was largely composed 
of farmers and their servants, some of them having to travel a 
long distance. They came from Darnick, Lindean, Caber- 
ston, Craiglatch, Langsliaw, &c. In order to enable Mr 
Henderson to undertake his pastoral duties with comfort, a 
pony was provided, but, being an indifferent horseman, 
the minister and ** Donald" did not always see eye to eye 
regarding the particular road that was to be travelled. It was 
nothing uncommon for the minister to walk home, a messenger 
being sent to bring back the pony. 

In 1836 the congregation was enabled to implement their 
bargain by paying the minister for the first time his full salary 
of ;^ I ID. At the same time the precentor and beadle, who 
hitherto had performed their several duties as a labour of love, 
were rewarded with the sum of jC^j ios and jC^ respectively. 

At a congregational meeting held in January, 1844, a 
committee was appointed to secure a site for a new church, and 
they were charged with the condition that they were not to 
increase the existing debt of £433 by more than ;6^30o. 



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254 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

A site was secured in High Street, the church was 
erected, and, in the month of November, 1844, Mr Henderson 

nrAQpViAH Viic lact CArmr^n in fViA rAA r»Vinrr»Vi On fViA frA\r%\xTtrMY 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 255 

compression of steam His expressions were clear and quiet to a 

deg^ree that a coarse and careless man, spoiled by the violence and noise from 
other pulpits, might think insipid. But let him see and feel the solemnising 
commanding power of that large, square, leonine countenance, the broad 

massive frame, as of a compressed Hercules Dr Henderson was 

peculiarly a preacher for preachers, as Spenser is a poet for poets." 

Dr Henderson had laboured under that form of heart disease 
termed angina pectoris^ and had for over twenty years lived on 
the verge of instant death. During his latter years his health 
had improved. This sense of bodily peril gave to his features a 
look of suffering, and he used to say he carried his grave always 
beside him. In a letter to an acquaintance soon after the death 
of his friend, Dr Brown of Edinburgh, he said, — 

" His removal is another memento to me that my own course is drawing 
near to an end. Nearly all the contemporaries and the friends of my youth 
are now gone before me. Well I may say in the words of your poet 
Vaughan, 

* They are all gone into the world of light. 

And I alone sit lingering here; 
Their very memory is calm and bright. 
And my sad thoughts doth clear.* '* 

Mr Oliver succeeded to the charge, and in 1861 the stipend 
was increased to ;^200. Under his ministrations the church 
flourished, and in 1864, to their great regret, he accepted a call 
to Regent Place, Glasgow. After leaving Galashiels, Mr Oliver 
received the degree of D.D., and in 1894 he was Moderator of 
the United Presbyterian Synod. 

A call was given to the Rev. John Pollock from Glasgow, 
1865 who was ordained on the 12th September, 1865, Under 
his ministry the debt upon the congregation w^as steadily 
reduced, till in 1866 it amounted to ;^400. In 1867 the 
church was enlarged and a hall provided at a cost of over 
;^i500. In 1873 the congregation found themselves free from 
debt for the first time in the history of the church. A 
new manse was erected in Abbotsford Road at a cost of 
;^2623, 7s in 1877, ^^^ ^" ^894 a mission hall was erected in 
Halliburton Place in connection with the church. 



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CHAPTER XXL 

West United Presbyterian Church. 

ORIGINALLY this congregation was connected with the 
body styled the Relief Church, which came into 
existence in 1752, and was known by that name till 
1847, when it became merged in the United Presbyterian Church. 
In the month of October, 1836, the Relief Presbytery of 
Kelso appointed Mr Durie of Earlston to preach in Galashiels 
with the view of erecting a station in connection with the Relief 
Synod. The service was held in the Subscription School, and 
the result encouraged them to persevere in the attempt to raise a 
congregation. It was agreed to rent the school, and Mr Durie 
and Mr Jarvie of Kelso opened the place for public worship. 
After maintaining these services on Sabbath evenings for some 
1837 time, in 1837 subscriptions amounting to £36 were raised for 
the purpose of fitting up the Bridge Inn assembly room as a 
place of worship, to be called the Relief Hall. About the 
middle of November in the same year it was formally opened 
by Mr Durie, when the membership numbered fifty-six. A 
call was then given to a Mr Kerr, who declined, and on 
the 19th June, 1838, the Rev. Robert Blair accepted a call, the 
stipend being fixed at ;^8o, while the emoluments of the 
precentor and the church officer were £3 and ;^i, 5s respectively. 
Mr Blair was born at Glasgow on the 9th April, 18 16. 
Having finished his curriculum, he went in 1831 to study 
theology under Professor Thomson of Paisley. At the age of 
twenty-one he was licensed, when he received calls from three 
congregations, but accepted that from Galashiels, and was 
ordained on the 17th October, 1838. For years the congregation 
had an arduous struggle, their penury proving almost an insuper- 
able barrier to their progress. They experienced great difficulty 
in making ends meet, and in this they were not always successful. 

256 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



257 



After the services had been held in the Relief Hall for a 
short time, the congregation erected a church in High Street 
in 1839, containing 524 sittings. The building was opened for 
public worship in the same year, at a total cost, including site, 
1865 of ;^824, i6s 9d. A manse costing ;^7oo was erected in the 
Windyknowe, and it required the exercise of no little self-denial 
on the part of the congregation before the debt was finally 
cleared off. 

In 1875 Mr Blair received the degree of D.D. from an 
American college, and in the fortieth year of his ministry he was 
publicly presented with a purse containing 200 sovereigns 
subscribed by the congregation and friends. In 1880 the church 
was rebuilt and enlarged and a commodious hall added, at a total 
cost of ;^2 1 39. On the same day that the church was opened the 
congregation were called upon to follow the remains of Dr Blair 
to his last resting-place in the Eastlands Cemetery, where they 
have erected a tribute to his memory. 

A call was given to Mr Duncan of Mid Calder, who 
declined, and shortly afterwards the Rev. William Mowat 
accepted a call and was ordained in the month of June, 1881. 
Mr Mowat is a native of Edinburgh, and previous to coming to 
^ Galashiels occupied the position of a student assistantship in 
Dean Street Church, Edinburgh. After his theological course 
was completed, he acted as assistant for twelve months to the 
Rev. Dr Halley of Dumbarton. 

At the present d^e the congregation numbers 650 members, 
having a Sabbath school attended by 350 scholars. There are 
also all the other agencies generally found in a well-organised 
congregation. 



T' 



CHAPTER XXII. 

Evangelical Union Congregational Church. 

^843 r I ^HIS Church was originated in 1843 by several members of 
the Melrose Congregational Church residing in Gala- 
shiels, who conducted meetings in the Bridge Inn 
assembly room. In that year the Evangelical Union was formed 
by the Rev. James Morrison, Kilmarnock, who in 1841 had been 
severed from connection with the United Secession Church on 
account of his views on the Atonement. In 1844 those who 
carried on these meetings in Galashiels desired to be formed into 
a Church. For this purpose they applied to the Evan- 
gelical Union, and on the 6th October in the same year the 
Church was constituted by the Rev. Robert Morrison, Bath- 
gate. A month afterwards the newly-formed congregation 
invited Mr James B. Robertson to undertake the duties of the 
pastorate. The call was accepted, and Mr Robertson was 

1844 ordained on the 21st November, 1844. 

Like all congregations similarly placed, they soon found the 
disadvantage of not- having a place of worship of their own. 
Accordingly, when a street was opened up, they took the 
first feu as a site for their church, and when the ground had 
been marked a number of those interested were discussing 
what the namje of the street should be, when the minister, 
in allusion to the denominational sympathies of the church, 
suggested that it might be called *' Union'' Street. The 
suggestion was acted upon, and the name remains. The church 
was built, and opened on the 12th July, 1846. The Rev. 
J. B. Robertson remained in the pastorate for three years, and 
then left for Alloa. Subsequently he acted as schoolmaster in 
the Subscription School in Galashiels, and afterwards went to 
Glasgow to undertake the editorship of The League Journal^ 

258 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 259 

and at a later date held pastorates both in England and 
Scotland. He died in 1896, within a day or two of the jubilee 
services of the church in Galashiels, at which he had intended 
to be present. 

He was succeeded by the Rev. James Howie, who was 
1852 settled in September, 1852, and remained till May, 1856. 

Mr Howie was a native of Kilmarnock, and began life as a 
stone-cutter. He was one of the earliest students of the Evan- 
gelical Union denomination, and laboured for some time at 
Wishaw before coming to Galashiels, after leaving which he 
became pastor of the Evangelical Union Church at Carluke. 
He emigrated to Canada in 1864, and was settled at Guelph till 
about 1 88 1, when he accepted a call from the Presbyterian 
Churches of Comber and Tilbury. He died at Comber on the 
23rd November, 1885. 

After Mr Howie's departure from Galashiels, the services 
were conducted by the deacons and probationers belonging to 
the denomination till i860, amongst whom was the Rev. A. M. 
F'airbairn, now Principal of Mansfield College, Oxford, who 
occupied the pulpit for some time. A call was presented to the 
Rev. Alexander Brown, who accepted it, and was ordained on 
1861 the 1 2th July, 1861, and inducted by the Rev. Dr Morrison. 

Although in entire sympathy with the Evangelical Union, 
the congregation had not been formally connected with it, till in 
1864 it was deemed advisable to seek admission, and upon 
application being made, the Church was duly received. 

Mr Brown remained in Galashiels till 1876, and during the 
course of his ministry substantial progress was made. In 1872 
the old church was rebuilt on the same site. The opening 
services were conducted by the Rev. John Pulsford, D.D., 
Edinburgh, and those on the following Sabbath by the Rev. Dr 
Ferguson, Glasgow. In 1876 Mr Brown demitted the charge, 
having accepted a call to St Paul's Street Evangelical Union 
Church, Aberdeen. 

While in Galashiels, Mr Brown published a small book on 
The Scripture Doctrine of Baptism^ which has since been 



26o 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



republished. Since then he has given to the world The Great 
Day of the Lord^ a book on the interpretation of the Apocalypse, 
and more recently a series of Lectures on the Epistle to the 
Hebrews^ works that have done much to establish his reputation 
as an original and vigorous thinker. 

A vacancy of six months followed the removal of Mr Brown, 
and then a call was accepted by the Rev. J. C. Nesbitt, formerly 
1877 Congregational minister at Bolton, Lancashire, who was 
inducted on the 3rd March, 1877, by the Rev. Professor Hunter, 
Leith. His ministr)^ extended over four and a half years, at the 
end of which, in December, 1881, he resigned to undertake the 
pastorate of the Congregational Church at Gourock. 

Between his removal and the next settlement eighteen 
months elapsed, when the Rev. W. F. Adamson, M.A., Ayr, 
was inducted by the Rev. Principal Morrison on the ist July, 
1883. The following year the congregation purchased a villa 
on the Mossilee' Road for their minister. 



CHAPTER XXIII. 



St Peter's Episcopal Church. 



THIS church originated irt the establishment of a mission 
at Wilderhaugh, the services being held in the lower 
flat of a dwelling-house, to which the name of St Mary's 
Chapel was given. Previous to acquiring a local habitation 
and a name, services had been held for some time in the dining- 
room at Gala House. The first service in the chapel was held 
1 85 1 on the loth August, 1851, which was conducted by the Rev. H. 
Randolph, incumbent of Holy Trinity Church, Melrose, and the 
Rev. T. A. Purdy. On that occasion the congregation con- 
sisted of thirty adults and twelve children. Before the expiry of 
the first year the attendance had increased to 150. The first 
confirmation was held on the ist May, 1852, when thirty-four 
persons were admitted to full membership. On Easter Day, 
1853, Holy Communion was celebrated and administered for the 
first time in St Mary's Chapel to twenty-eight members, Avho 
previously had observed the ordinance at Melrose. 

In a very short time the growth of the congregation rendered 
their humble meeting place totally inadequate, and steps were 
taken to erect a new place of worship. On St Peter's Day, 
28th June, 1853, the foundation-stone of the present church 
in Abbotsford Road was laid, and^ the building and burial- 
ground were consecrated on the 17th August, 1854, by the 
Bishop of the Diocese (Glasgow). At the same time the 
Rev. T. A. Purdy was inducted to the charge as the first 
incumbent. 

The original trustees of the church were the Bishop of the 
Diocese (ex-officio)^ the Duke of Buccleuch, Sir James Russell 
of Ashiestiel, Hugh Scott of Gala, and W. S. Walker of 
Bowland. 

261 



262 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1859 In 1859 Mr Purdy resigned in consequence of bad health, 

and was succeeded by the Rev. H. G. W. Aubrey, who continued 
till 1865, when he was appointed Rector of Hale, New Forest, 
Hampshire, where he died on the 14th November, 1892, in the 
sixty-sixth year of his age. 

Mr Aubrey was succeeded by the Rev. A. A. Jenkins, who 
1866 was appointed to the incumbency in 1866. 

Mr Jenkins was born at Bristol in 1830. At the age of 
sixteen he went, with the intention of taking holy orders, to 
Harrow Weald, where he remained for seven years. After two 
years at King's College, London, he obtained a first class in 
Finals and the Associateship in theology. He was ordained 
in 1857 ^y Bishop Davys of Peterborough to the curacy of 
Raunds, Northamptonshire, and was gospeller in Peterborough 
Cathedral. He remained two years at Raunds and then 
accepted the curacy of Barnack, where he laboured for the 
succeeding seven years. While there he married the eldest 
daughter of the late Dean Wilson of Aberdeen, whose wife was 
the only child of Bishop William Skinner, Primus of Scotland. 

When Mr Jenkins was appointed to Galashiels in 1866 there 
was a debt upon the church of ^1500, and the living having 
been vacant for the preceding nine months, this made the work all 
the harder for the new incumbent. Through unremitting effort 
on his part and the liberality of Major Scott and others, not 
only was the debt cleared off, but in 1881 a new chancel, south 
aisle, vestries, and an organ were built at a cost of nearly 
;^2000. The Parsonage also was enlarged, and in 1891 a 
church hall was erected at a cost of ;^I500. In Halliburton 
Place, where a considerable number of the members reside, a 
mission hall is also rented. There are no seat rents in con- 
nection with the church, and the total income of the living from 
congregational sources amounts only to ^100, the remainder 
being a bequest by the late Major Scott of Gala. In 1888 Mr 
Jenkins was mainly instrumental in procuring the separation of 
the Tweedside district from the Diocese of Glasgow, and it now 
belongs to that of Edinburgh. 



B 



CHAPTER XXIV. 

Church of Our Lady and St Andrew. 

EFORE a Roman Catholic place of worship exist 
Galashiels the spiritual necessities of those of 
faith were ministered to by Father Taggart, who 
from Hawick once a month and celebrated Mass in a pi 
house in Overhaugh Street. Afterwards the Bridge 
assembly room was utilized for this purpose. 

Previous to this time James Robert Hope, a Lc 
barrister, had married a grand-daughter of Sir Walter Scot 
came to reside at Abbotsford, where, having assumed the 
name of Scott, he became known as Mr Hope-Scott. Aften 
he and his wife left the Church of England and joined the R 
Catholic Church, when he commenced to take a deep in 
both in the temporal and spiritual welfare of his co-religic 
who resided in Galashiels. Being desirous that the sei 
should be conducted in a fitting manner, he purchas 
property at the foot of Stirling Street, upon the site of whi( 
erected a chapel and school, the chapel being opened on th 
1853 January, 1853. 

In its early days the Roman Catholic mission in Galas 
. was under the charge of priests belonging to the Order of Ot 
of Mary Immaculate, whose Scottish headquarters are in L 
On two occasions Bishop Gillis of Edinburgh visited Galat 
and ordained several priests in the old chapel. In ord< 
provide suitable accommodation for the resident priests, Mr li 
Scott bought the adjoining properties, which have been 
as the Presbytery till the present time. Owing to the 1 
increase of the congregation, the chapel soon proved too si 
and Mr Hope-Scott again displayed his zeal and generosil 
purchasing ground adjacent to the chapel, upon Avhicl 
1856 the present building was commenced. In i86c 

. 263 



264 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

presented to the church a handsome reliquary and two large brass 
candelabra. These articles formerly belonged to the chapel at 
Alton Towers, and were bought at the sale of the effects of John, 
Earl of Shrewsbury. In 1870 a new pulpit and altar rails were 
erected, and in 1873 it was found necessary to enlarge the church. 
Again the necessary funds, amounting to jCsooo, were supplied 
by Mr Hope-Scott, and the church was completed in the manner 
it stands at the present time. 

In the interior of the church various improvements have been 
made from time to time, several stained glass windows adding 
much to its appearance. On the Gospel side of the High Altar 
there is affixed to the wall a brass plate bearing the following 
inscription, — 

** In Memoriam, of your charity pray for the soul of James Robert Hope" 
Scott, Q.C., the founder of this church, who died April 29, 1873, fortified with 
the Sacraments of the Church and the blessing of his Holiness, Pius IX. A 
weekly mass was founded by him for the repose of his soul and those of his 
family." 

On the Epistle side of the church there is a Lady Chapel 
containing a very handsome altar in honour of the Virgin, where 
another brass plate is thus engraved, — 

** Pray for the soul of Charlotte Hope-Scott of Abbotsford, born January 
ist, 1828, died October 26th, 1858, who, by the sale of her jewels, provided 
this altar of Our Lady." 

On the same side of the church is St Patrick's Chapel, where 
a tablet on the wall furnishes the following information, — 

** In honour of the great Apostle of the Irish, the altar in this chapel, 
used for the first time on the 22nd July, 1866, in presence of the Right 
Reverend Francis Kerril Amherst, Bishop of Northampton, and a great con- 
course of the faithful, and solemnly consecrated on the 24th March, 1867, by 
the Right Reverend John Strain, D.D., Bishop of Abila and Vicar Apostolic 
of the Eastern District of Scotland, was erected by his children and clients in 
Galashiels, Selkirk, Lauder, Earlston, Stow, Melrose, Darnick, Midlem, &c." 

The baptismal font was presented to the church in 1873 by 
Mr Earp of London, in recognition of the congregation's 
kindness to his son. When the church was being enlarged, 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 265 

Mr Earp, junior, while employed on the sculptural work, fell 
. from the scaflFold upon which he stood, and sustained very 
severe injuries. For the following three months he lay in the 
Presbytery, kindly tended by the members of the congregation. 

On the other side of the church is the Chapel of St Francis 
Xavier, and beside the altar is a brass plate thus inscribed, — 

** Of your charity, pray for the souls of Lord Henry Francis Charles Kerr, 
who died March 7th, 1882, and of Louisa Dorothea, his wife, who died 
January 18th, 1884, the donors of this altar, and for their family, for whom an 
annual mass is founded in perpetuity." 

In 1884 the two confessionals now in use were built, 
the wooden boxes formerly used being discarded, and in 1890 the 
Altar of the Sacred Heart was erected on the Gospel side of the 
church. 

In 1894 a bazaar was held for the purpose of reducing the 
debt of ^2000, chiefly caused by the erection of the new school 
buildings in 1879, the sum of ;{^7oo being realized. 

In connection with the church there are the following 
societies, viz.: — The Guild of St Aloysius, The Women's 
Guild, The Children of Mary, The Boys' Sodality, and the 
Guild of St Agnes. 

As stated previously, the mission was originally in charge 
of the priests of the Order of Oblates of Mary Immaculate, but 
in 1863 it was handed over to Fathers of the Jesuit Order. The 
following is a list of the several priests of the latter order who 
have had charge of the mission: — Fathers Langton, 1863; 
Amherst, 1865; Foxwell, 1868; Law, 1873; Leslie, 1874; Selby, 
1874; Maguire, 1874; Sherlock, 1876; Lightbound, 1881; 
Pittar, 1882; Karslake, 1889; and Lea, 1893. 



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CHAPTER XXV. 

South United Presbyterian Church. 

THIS Church owed its origin to the growth of the 
town and the feeling expressed by the Presbytery of 
Melrose regarding the special need for Church extension 
under the circumstances. The idea was submitted to the 
existing Churches of the same denomination in the town, with 
the result that the East United Presbyterian Church expressed 
its approval, while the West United Presbyterian Church 
resolved not to oppose it. 

On the 13th February, 1877, a committee of the Presbytery 
held a conference with the elders belonging to the above 
Churches, when a committee was appointed to co-operate with 
the Presbyterial Committee in giving practical effect to the 
scheme. . As an initial step, a preaching station was opened in 
the Public Hall on the fourth Sabbath of February by Mr 
Robson of Lauder, the services being continued by members 
of the Presbytery in rotation. In the following month the 
services were transferred to the old Free Church in the 
Market Square, where opportunity was afforded for persons 
to join the station, and on the nth June, 1877, ^^e Pres- 
bytery erected it into a congregation, consisting of fifty-seven 
members. A student, Walter Brown, M.A., belonging to 
Selkirk, conducted the services for two months, and when he was 
licensed the congregation presented him with an unanimous 
call to become their minister, which he accepted. He was 
1877 ordained on the 15th November, 1877, the membership at that 
date having risen to 128. 

Arrangements were entered into for building a church, and 
a site was obtained in Galapark Road. The first stone was laid 
in January, 1879, ^^^ ^^® church was opened on the 19th 

266 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



267 



August, 1880, at a total cost of ;{J^5000. A manse was also 
acquired on the Windyknowe, but being found unsuitable it was 
afterwards sold and demolished, its site now forming part of the 
grounds of Woodlands. Under Mr Brown's ministry the con- 
gregation rapidly increased. He received calls from London 
Road, Edinburgh; and Greyfriars*, Glasgow, which he declined. 
He accepted a call from the Braid Congregation, Edinburgh, and 
1886 the pastoral tie was dissolved in February, 1886. 

In the month of July following the Rev. W. Burnet 
Thomson, B.D., a native of Greenock, who had previously been 
an assistant at Paisley, was settled over the congregation, the 
membership being 420. 



In addition to the foregoing places of worship in the town 
there are also five different sections of Plymouth Brethren, 
one body of Christadelphians, and a branch of the Salvation 
Army, who have leased the Corn Exchange for a term of years 
for their sole use. 

There are also the following religious institutions, viz., 
The Presbyterian Union, composed of the United Presbyterian 
and the Galashiels Free Churches; the Galashiels Home 
Mission, Sabbath Morning Fellowship Union, Boys' and Girls' 
Religious Society, Young Women's Christian Association, 
Faith Mission, Prayer Union, a branch of the Railway Mission, 
Band of Hope Union, Scotch Girls' Friendly Society, Young 
Men's Friendly Society, &c. 



SECTION III.— WOOLLEN INDUSTRY. 



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CHAPTER I. 

REGARDING the date when the manufacture of woollen 
cloth was introduced into England authorities differ. 
According to one account, this occurred 150 years before 
the time of Csesar, while another fixes it at the time of the 
Roman invasion, when, it is said, a woollen manufactory was 
established at Winchester for the purpose of providing clothing 
for the Roman army. Were this the case, it would appear that 
though Rome civilized, and perhaps taught the natives to 
wear cloth in place of the skins of animals, yet, when they left 
the country, they had done little or nothing to enable the 
inhabitants, when thrown on their own resources, to profit by 
their example. Consequently, little is recorded regarding this 
industry till the time of the Norman Conquest in 1066, when 
numbers of Flemings came over to England, whose skill in 
making cloth was considered to be a gift of nature. 

At what period the industry reached Scotland is unknown, 
but during the reign of David I. some of the privileges granted 
to the burghs in Scotland throw light upon a manufacture 
which must have been carried on in several districts in the 
country. This was the making of cloth, the trades of dyers and 
fullers being very early enumerated among the burgher classes. 
Not only is there evidence that woollen cloth was produced for 
home consumption, but also that an export trade was carried on 
to a limited extent. 

Edinburgh was one of the first places in Scotland where 
woollen goods were manufactured, the weavers in that city 
having been incorporated in 1475. As time went on, various 
Acts of Parliament were passed for the encouragement of the 
trade, one of these in 1597 denounced 

** The hame bringing of English claith, the same having only for the maist 
part an outward show, Wanting that substance and strength whilk oft times it 
appears to have." 

271 



272 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

In the year 1600 an Act was passed by the Privy Council 
to import one hundred families of strangers skilled in the making 
of woollen cloth, in order to promote the manufacture of such 
goods in Scotland. On account of their ignorance of the 
language, it was provided 

" That it salbe lesum to thame to have ane minister or pastoure quha sail 
teich to thame the Worde of God in their awin language, providing that he 
agr&reis with the religioun presentlie profFest within this realme." 

With the view of inducing the strangers to come to this 
country, it was declared that the head of every family should be 
naturalised, and made free of any burgh in which he might 
take up his abode, and enjoy all the privileges and immunities 
similar to the natural born burgess. They were also exempted 
from all taxation or public burdens for the space of ten years on 
account of the expenses caused by their removal from their own 
country. 

In 1604 it was enacted that 

** It sail be lauchfuU to gif and grant power to ony that his hienes sail mak 
choyse of to vndertak the said claith-working, that thairby his hienes profite 
may be aduancet and the cuntrey benefited." 

Measures were also taken to prevent fraud in connection 
with the sale of wool, and it was ordained 

" That nane quho sellis wooll shall Tveit the samyne, or put in any worse 
wooll or filthe to mak vp weight thairon." 

Again, in 16 19, the Privy Council brought five men from 
Jiolland to give instruction in the manufacture of coarse woollen 
stuff to the boys and girls in the Edinburgh workhouse, but 
this scheme proved a failure. 

In 1636 the magistrates of Aberdeen obtained a patent from 
Charles I. to establish a house of correction, in connection with 
which, and with the view of reforming the criminal classes, they 
were to be instructed in the manufacture of broadcloths, kerseys, 
seys, and other coarse cloths, this scheme being eventually 
abandorted in 171 1. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

In 1 64 1 another Act of the Scottish Parliament declai 

** Forsameikle as the want of manufactories, especiallie of cloth of i 
within this kingdom ar the occassioun of the great poverty of this 
which suflferis by transporting of vnrought commodities sold in forrai 
at a low rait, bringing home of other cuntreys made commodities 
heir at a dear rait, flfor the qlk thair goes yeirlie out of Scotland i 
alone, fyfteine hundreth thousand pundis. And which is more to be n 
occassiones all sortis of villanie by thousandes of pepple quho takis th 
to begging and sorning." 

It was enacted that there should be provided in ever 
**ane schooll or hous of vertue," where boys above ten y 
age should be bound apprentice for seven years to lee 
spinning, weaving, litting (dyeing), and dressing of cloth 
In 1 68 1 the first really promising effort to estal 
manufactory of woollen fabrics in Scotland was made 
English company. They acquired ground in the vicii 
Haddington, and erected the necessary buildings, to whi 
name of Newmills was given. English workmen were b 
for the purpose of instructing the natives, and for a nun 

I' years the company prospered. After the death of the m, 

? its affairs fell into confusion, which in a few years brought 

a dissolution and the abandonment of the enterprise so 

( the original company was concerned. 

t Notwithstanding the fact that woollen cloth was bein^ 

in various parts of the country, the industry was only con I 
on a limited scale, and difficulty was experienced in pro : 
cloth in any large quantity. In 1683 General Dalyell, f 
that he could not procure as much cloth of one colour as • 
clothe a regiment of dragoons, obtained a license from the 
Council permitting the Newmills company to import 2536 1 
grey cloth from England, caution being found to the ext: 
;{^500 that the importation would not exceed that quantity, 
regiment was probably the **Scots Greys,'' raised by G" 
Palyell shortly before that period. John Graham of Clavei 
was also permitted to import one hundred and fifty ells re 
forty ells of white cloth upon similar conditions. 



(. 



274 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

At this period the manufacture of linen was considered 
a better industry for Scotland to take up than that of woollen 
goods. It was found that the English manufacturers of woollens 
could sell their products from ten to fifteen per cent, cheaper 
than they could be produced for in Scotland. On the other 
hand Scotch-made linen could be sold in England from five 
to ten per cent, cheaper than they could produce it in that 
country. Acting upon this idea, an Act of Parliament was 
passed in 1686, for the purpose of encouraging the linen 
manufacture, in the following terms, — 

** Looking to the loss Scotland had in paying away money for linen of 
Holland and such like, it is hereby enacted that no corpse hereafter of any 
person whatever shall be buried in any sheet, shirt, or anything else, except 
in plain linen or cloth of hards, made and spun in Scotland" 

The penalty imposed upon those who contravened this Act 
was ;^300 Scots for a nobleman, and ;^200 Scots for any other 
person.. Another Act of 1695 confirmed the Act of 1686, with 
the addition that the nearest elder or deacon in the parish was 
to attend and see if the statute was observed. In 1707 one of 
the last Acts of the Scottish Parliament was to repeal this statute 
in favour of the woollen industry, when it was ordained that the 
dead should be buried in woollen, and imposing a fine of jCso 
on clergymen who neglected to certify any instance in which the 
Act was disregarded. 

In 1703 the woollen industry appears to have been conducted 
on a larger scale, as in a supplication to Parliament by William 
Hog of Harcarse, Berwickshire, requesting certain privileges, 
it is set forth that 

** He had employed many persons, both English and Scotch, in spinning, 
weaving, walking, litting and dressing of woollen yarn, and did make and lit 
as much red cloath as did furnish all the Earl of Hyndford's regiment of 
dragoons with red cloathes, and that in a very short space.'* 

When the Union between England and Scotland took 
place, the result proved disastrous to the Scottish woollen 
manufacturers. At that period they had arrived at some per- 
fection in making broad-Cloths, druggets, and woollen stuffs 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 275 

generally. When the prohibition against the free importation 
of English cloth was removed, it was sent into Scotland .in such 
quantities and at such prices as completely extinguished the 
manufacture of the better class of goods in that country. 
Possibly this result had been foreseen, as the fifteenth article of 
the Treaty of Union made provision for giving some equivalent 
to Scotland on account of the increase in Custom and Excise 
duties. It was provided that ;^2000 a year should, for seven 
years, be applied towards encouraging and promoting the 
manufacture of coarse wool in those shires which produced wool, 
and afterwards wholly employed towards 

** Encourag"ing and promoting the fisheries and such other manufactories 
and improvements in Scotland as may most conduce to the general good of 
the Kingdom." 

In 1 718 this sum of ;^2000 was made payable for all time 
coming out of the Customs and Excise in Scotland. In 1725 an 
addition was made to this amount by an Act which provided 

**That when the produce of threepence per bushel, to be laid on malt, should 
exceed ;^20,ooo a year, such surplus should be added to the above fund of 
;^2ooo and applied to the same purposes." 

In 1826 the Crown was empowered by Parliament to 
appoint twenty-one trustees, who, in the following year, were 
named by letters patent, which prescribed their duties and the 
plan of expending the funds at their disposal in the encourage- 
ment of fisheries and the woollen, linen, and hempen manu- 
factures. Among the names on the first Board were the 
following, viz.: — Sir Hew Dalrymple, Lord President of 
Session; Sir James McKenzie of Roystown, Andrew Fletcher 
of Milntown, and Patrick Campbell of Monzie, Senators of the 
College of Justice; Sir James Clerk of Pennycuik, George 
Drummond, Lord Provost of Edinburgh; Mungo Graham of 
Gorthic, James Paterson, advocate, of Kirkton; Thomas Hope 
of Rankeilor, Gilbert Stewart, and Alexander Arbuthnot, 
merchants in Edinburgh. In 1809 other seven members were 
added to the Board, and in 1828 new letters patent were issued, 
giving to the trustees a wider discretion which empowered them 



276 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 

to apply their funds for the 'encouragement, not only of manu- 
factures, but also of such other undertakings in Scotland as 
should most conduce to the general good of the United 
Kingdom, 

This Board was termed ** The Board of Trustees for 
Manufactures in Scotland." One of the earlier presidents was 
Sir Patrick Lindsay, Lord Provost of Edinburgh, who in 1733 
published a book entitled The Interests of Scotland Considered. 
This work contains an interesting account of the woollen trade 
of Scotland as it existed at that date, and states that, 

**At Kilmarnock are made of our own wool, low priced serges, partly for 
home consumpt and partly for the markets of Holland. At Stirling and its 
neighbourhood large quantities of serges are made, and several low priced 
woollen goods, all for home consumpt, and rather cheaper than can be pur- 
chased in England. At Aberdeen and the adjacent counties large quantities 
of coarse tarred wool are manufactured into coarse serges, and knit stockings 
of all prices. Some of these goods are consumed at home, some exported to 
Holland, and some sold in London for export to foreign parts. At Edinburgh 
fine shalloons are made of the best wool, and cheaper than they can be had in 
England. At Musselburgh there is a considerable manufacture of low priced 
goods for home consumpt and export to the Plantations, but the price has 
fallen so low, the makers can scarce make their bread by them. At Gala- 
shiels are made a few coarse kerseys, called Galashiels Greys, for home 
consumpt, and was their wool better scribbled, the goods more milled and 
better finished, they might serve in place of the lowest priced Yorkshires for 
country wear to ordinary people and day labourers. At Kirkcudbright, 
Hawick, and other places near the wool counties, several packs of tarred 
wool have been washed, some of it sorted, combed, spun, and wrought into 
blankets and other coarse goods by private hancjs for their own use; all done 
by the help of public encouragement to advance the price of wool in these 
parts, but as yet to little or no purpose." 

Inspectors appointed by the Board of Trustees travelled 
throughout Scotland, for whose guidance the following instruc- 
tions were issued, — 

**I. You will carefully inquire into and inspect every considerable centre 
of the woollen manufacture carried on throughout the country, 
and report particularly the kind, quality, and price of the wool made 
use of, from where the same is procured, where the yarn is spun, the 
rate of spinning, the different kinds, qualities, and prices of the 
goods manufactured, and where the same feire sold. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 277 

II. You are to remark the natural advantages of the situation for any 
particular branch of the woollen manufacture, and give your opinion 
in what manner they may be best encouraged by assistance from 
the Board. 

III. You are to give your best advice to the woollen manufacturers as to the 

proper method of carrying on, improving and extending their 
businesses, and if you should observe any frauds among the spinners 
and weavers you will report the same to the Board with your opinion 
of the proper method of correcting them. 

IV. In your progress through the woollen counties you will make particular 

inquiry as to the quantity of raw and manufactured wool bought up 
and sent to England, and report as nearly as you can judge the 
qualities of English wool imported into Scotland." 

One of these inspectors was David Loch, who in 1776 
made a tour through the trading towns and villages in Scotland, 
and afterwards published a series of essays on their trade and 
manufactures. In these he strongly urged the necessity of 
persevering in the effort to establish the woollen manufacture. 
He predicted that by doing so Scotland would be raised from 
abject poverty and mean obscurity to the same degree of 
opulence and dignity as the sister kingdom. 

In one of these essays he thus describes the town and trade 
of Galashiels at that date, — 

** Galashiels is a large irregular-built village, the property of John Scott, 
Esq. of Gala. The houses are mostly built on a ninety-nine years* lease. The 
people are very industrious, all employed in the coarse woollen goods, but 
principally on what is called Galashiels Greys, three-quarters wide and from 
twenty to twenty-one yards long, Value from is 6d to 4s per yard. Blankets are 
likewise made here from Forest wool, which is much less laid with tar than 
that produced in Tweeddale. Here there are about thirty looms. They spin 
all their own yarn, and sell a good deal of it in different places in the country. 
They manufacture annually about 2200 stones of wool tron weight. In this 
village there are three waulk mills that pay six pounds sterling to Mr Scott 
for the water. George Marshall, who was an apprentice by order of the 
Board of Trustees, finds his woad vats answer well, and the Haddington woad 
he and all the clothiers think better than any they ever had from England. 
Thomas Turnbull was the first that taught the use of woad here. Alexander 
Scott is of much service to this place, he manufactures into cloth and yarn 
fifty packs of wool and eight packs of Riga flax annually, and is employed by 
Clement & Russell of Darlington, though the carriage to and from that placp 



278 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

is equal to one penny per pound, which is full fifteen per cent, on the value. 
He likewise manufactures a great deal of coarse flannels from tenpence to 
fourteenpence per yard. The houses now building at this village evidently 
show that the people are in a much more prosperous way at present than they 
were formerly, as one new house is worth at least ten of the old ones." 

In regard to the Border towns, Mr Loch states that 

<* Melrose had 140 looms, most of them being employed in the weaving of 
woollen cloth. In Hawick there were 51 looms employed in the weaving of 
both linen and woollen goods, besides 14 looms engaged in the weaving of 
carpets. Kelso had 40 looms mostly engaged in weaving blankets and 
flannels. In Peebles 40 looms were employed in the manufacture of coarse 
woollen goods. In Selkirk a few looms were devoted to jobbing, but a con- 
siderable quantity of yarn was made in the district, it being estimated that 
;^SS per week was paid in the town for spinning. Jedburgh is described as a 
Royal burgh, where * there had been much dispute and discussion about their 
town's politics, so that the people had neglected all business and paid little or 
no attention to manufactures;' there were about 55 looms in the town, all 
engaged in jobbing." 

In reference to the position of the woollen trade throughout 
Scotland generally at this period, Edinburgh used about 21,000 
lbs. of wool annually, the workmen, being on piece work, could 
earn one shilling per day *Mf they choose to exert themselves.*' 
Dalkeith manufactured 100 stones of wool into broad-cloth 
ranging from four shillings to fourteen shillings per yard. The 
factory at Musselburgh used about 1000 stones of wool, and in 
addition a quantity of yarn was bought in Selkirk and Peebles, 
the price of the goods being from two shillings and sixpence to 
sixteen shillings per yard. Wool was also manufactured into 
cloth, carpets, and stockings at Dunbar, Linton, Tranent, 
Linlithgow, Perth, and Inverness. Glasgow had one carpet 
factory, Stirling had one hundred and sixty looms, thirty-eight 
stocking frames, and seventeen carpet frames. Alloa had twenty 
factories employing about one hundred and fifty looms, Kilmar- 
nock had sixty-six carpet looms, and eighty engaged in other 
branches of the trade. Ayr had about one hundred looms, Moffat 
had fifty engaged on serges, shalloons, and blankets. Elgin 
produced annually ;^ 15,000 worth of yarn for the London and 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 279 

Glasgow markets. At Peterhead ther^ were two factories pro- 
ducing goods to the amount of £50 and ;^6o respectively per 
week. In Aberdeen two hundred and forty looms were engaged 
on woollen and linen, and Montrose had a woollen factory 
employing seventy hands. 

Such was the extent of the woollen trade in Scotland in 
1777 when the Galashiels Manufacturers' Corporation came into 
existence. 



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weavers' flag. 



CHAPTER II. 



The Weavers' Corporation. 



THE earliest indication of the woollen trade in Galashiels is 
contained in a manuscript belonging to Mr Scott of 
ic»i Gala, dated 1581. In this document ** waulk mills'* 

are mentioned as pertinents belonging to the barony. In those 
days these mills were of an extremely primitive construction, 
being in all probability driven direct from the water wheel, 
and either entirely exposed or merely covered with a boarded 
roof, consequently in frosty weather work was necessarily 
suspended. This indeed was the case up to a comparatively 
recent date, as a late venerable member of the Manufacturers' 
Corporation was in the habit of jocularly claiming the credit of 
introducing the first improvement of any kind in the trade by 
causing a clay wall to be built round the north side of his waulk 
mill as a protection from the snow-drift in winter. 

The origin of the term ** walker'' is supposed to be derived 
from the ancient practice of women working the cloth with their 
feet. This process was rendered obsolete by the introduction of 
fulling mills. 

280 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 281 

The custom of fulling cloth in this manner would also seem 
to have been practised in England in ancient times, as the 
following quotation testifies, — 

* * Cloth that Cometh fro the wei ving is not comely to wear, 
Till it be fulled vnder fote, or in fulling stocks, 
Washen well wyth water, and with tasels cratched, 
Touked and teynted, and vnder taylour*s hande." 

Nothing further is recorded regarding the woollen trade of 
1666 the village till 1^66, when a small colony of weavers formed 
themselves into a corporate body. The purpose of this com- 
bination was the better regulation of the trade, and providing 
the various utensils and articles connected with the craft 
for the common use of the members. It is interesting to 
note the curious trade practices, and the changes that are 
chronicled. In early times the members of the Corporation were 
jealous of each other, and attempts to over-reach neighbours 
were not altogether unknown. The following are the rules 
and regulations by which the members bound themselves, — 

** Galashiels, Sth November y 1666. 

I. — The which day the Deacon and whole brethren of the Weavers within 
the bounds and jurisdiction of Galashiels having met and convened 
anent making of the several Acts following for punishing the many 
disorders and abuses that may happen to be committed by any 
member of their trade in time coming, has statute and ordained. 
Likewise they by these presents and by virtue of a Warrant and 
Commission given to them by thfe Right Honourable James Scott, 
baron and bailie principal of the Baronie of Galashiels, and John 
Scott his brother Germain, depute of the same, dated the 8th day of 
November, 1666, and registered in the Court book of the said 
baronie the 9th November, 1666. The same more fully bears statute 
and ordains, &c. 

2. — That in case it shall happen any of the brethren of the said trade, or any 
person whatever to enter a Complaint against another, that with 
their said complaint (before they can be heard) they are to consigne 
in the hands of their Treasurer the sum of Half-a-Crown to be 
confiscate or forfeited in case their complaint be not proven or 
made out. 



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282 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

2. — Its statute enacted and ordained whosoever of the said trade through 
sloth or neglect, by themselves or their servants, shall spoil any work, 
he shall pay into the box of the Corporation the sum of half-a-crpwn. 

4. — That no weaver in this Corporation shall take an Apprentice for a 
shorter space than four years bound, and the same to be cleared by 
their Indentures under the pain of paying into the Corporation the 
sum of ten pounds, Scots money. 

5. — That on the entrie of every apprentice to the trade they shall pay to the 
common box of the trade the sum of half-a-crown, toties quoties. 

6. — That each apprentice after the expiration of his apprenticeship, or any 
journeyman setting up and going to his own hand, at their entrie 
thereto they shall pay into the common box four pounds Scots. 

7. — That the Deacon of the said trade shall be present at the agreement of 
any apprentice under the penalty of half-a-crown. 

8. — That whosoever of the said trade being warned, by the Officer at the 
Deacon's direction to attend the funeral of any member of the Cor- 
poration, and shall be found absent, shall pay thirteen shillings and 
fourpence, Scots money, if he has not a lawful excuse; provided 
always the said burial be held within the bounds of the parish 
or the like. 

9. — That whosoever of the said trade shall work any work to any person who 
was in use to work to another person, and has not satisfied him for 
the former work, shall pay forty shillings Scots money, being adver- 
tised by the former workman that he is not satisfied; and yet not- 
withstanding of his said advertisement, works the said work, or 
denies that he had the same or wrought it. 
10. — That whosoever of the said trade shall refuse to pay any of the fines 
contained in this and all other pages in case of their contravention 6i 
the foresaid Acts, or of any Acts or statutes to be made in time 
coming. Their contravention being made out, .and they required to 
pay their fines by the Officer, shall pay the double of the fine without 
any modification for their Contempt and Disobedience. 
II. — Its statute and ordained that whosoever of the said Corporation shall 
happen at any time to undervalue their Deacon, Quarter-master or 
Box-master, by word or otherwise, shall pay the sum of half- 
a-crown, t.q." 

The above were the original rules of the Weavers' Corpor- 
ation, but in the course of the following year others were 
added to the following effect, — 

**ij/ October, 1667. 
12. — That whosoever of the said trade shall entice or persuade any other 
man's servant from his service, he shall pay half-a-crown, t.q. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 283 

13. — That each person of the said Corporation who shall at any of their 
meetings be heard Cursing or Swearing, shall pay twopence stg-., 
t.q. And if they shall refuse to pay that sum, he or they shall be 
poinded for the double of the said fine. 

14. — Its statute and ordained by the Dbacon, and a quorum convened as 
above. That every one that setteth up in the said trade shall before 
their setting up be tried, and being found sufficient and qualified, 
shall at their upsetting pay four pounds Scots, as is contained in any 
former Act made thereanent, and if they be found unqualified they 
shall serve Another Year." 

1669 These regulations were ratified on the 17th July, 1669, by 

the Lord of the Manor, and power was given 

"To fine, unlaw, and amerciate the contraveners thereof, and to compel, poynd, 
and distrenzie, by their own ordinary officer therefor." 

Under these rules the Corporation existed for the following 
twenty-three years, till on the 24th December, 1692, it was again 

enacted, — 

** 24/A December, 1692. 
15. — That in all time coming, whosoever of the said Corporation shall 
happen to be married, shall give to the Deacon one pair of gloves to 
the value of Ten Shillings Scots, whither he be present at the 
wedding or not. 
16. — That no upsetting journeyman or apprentice shall enter to work until 
they satisfy the trade according to the former Act. 
i6q6 ^7' — ''^^ NovembeTy 1696. — That none of the said trade shall absent himself 
from any meeting of the said trade (if he be warned thereto by the 
officer) without liberty being asked and given by the Deacon, under 
the pain and penalty of one shilling stg., tq. 
1 7 13 18. — 25/A December, 1713- — That whosoever shall take work from any person 
that hath come from another workman, he or they shall be obliged 
to satisfy the former workman, and this must be done before they 
can work any to them; under the pain often shillings stg. 
19. — That if any of the trade shall have any complaint to enter, they shall 
enter them within the present Deacon's reign, or else they cannot 
be heard. 
20. — That none within the Corporation shall inform any Corporation or member 
of another Corporation, who is not a member of his own, of any Acts 
contained therein, under the pain of paying the sum of half-a-crown. 
21. — That at the giving-up of Indentures the master and his late apprentice 
are to pay half a gallon of ale, t.q. 



284 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1 7 15 22. — 2nd No7}ember^ i7*5- — ^That every eldest son of a member of the 
Corporation serving his apprenticeship with a member, at his entry 
shall pay five shillings sterling for their freedom to the trade, but not 
serving shall pay according to Article 37. 

23. — It is agreed upon that all the weavers in the Corporation of Galashiels 
that has three stones of wool must dye it in the leads, and lesser 
quantities in the kettles. 
'779 ^^ 22nd February, 1779, it was agreed upon by the whole trade that the 

caulms given by the Honourable Trustees must not be sold or carried 
out of the town. 
1 78 1 24. — 2^st December^ 1781. — The trade being met ^nd taking into consideration 
the many debates that happen from some of the members absenting 
themselves from the public meetings. Its statute and ordained that 
whosoever absents themselves from the public meetings, that is able 
to attend, must pay along with the rest of the Corporation that does 
attend, or be cut off from being a member. 
On the 1st February, 1782, it is recorded that ^ Alexander Clapperton, son 
of Thomas Clapperton, weaver in Newmill, entered to the trade of 
weaver in Galashiels, and to have an equal claim to everything in the 
trade, along with the rest of the same trade, for paying the sum of 
six shillings sterling, no way entitling his progeny. Likewise James 
Lees, son of Robert Lees, shares the like privilege for paying the 
sum of one shilling stg. for the mortcloth, and two for drink, the 
same as a member's eldest son.' 

25. — Its statute and ordained, that at the minute writing of an apprentice they 
are to pay one shilling stg. for drink, and two at their indenture 
signing. 

26. — Whosoever refuses to pay their fines or other bondages that the trade 
find reasonable, shall lose every benefit of the same trade. 

27. — Whosoever does not bring home the Trade's Reeds within twenty-four 
hours after cutting out the web, shall pay twopence for each 
day after. 

28. — That whatsoever comes to be disputed in trade, the members must 
address themselves to the Deacon, and must not speak above five 
minutes at a time, under the penalty of one shilling stg. for 
each offence. 

29. — That if any master shall have an Apprentice to go from him by 
receiving a compensation before the expiry of his indenture, he shall 
pay five shillings stg. into the box. 

30. — That whereas it hath been made a complaint that some of the members 
hath depreciated hi& brother's work in a secret way to the customer. 
Its statute and ordained that no brother shall follow that practice in 
future, under the penalty of paying one shilling stg. for each 
offence. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



285 



31. — That no member who may go out of the trade for their disobedience to 
the laws of the Corporation, can be taken in again without paying 
half-a-crown above their fine or cause of going out. 

32. — ^That no member is to give any assistance to any outcast member by 
giving or lending their own property, under the pain and penalty of 
one shilling stg. for each offence. The above to extend to all 
incomers. 
1786 33. — 24/A November y 1786. — This day it is agreed upon by the whole Corpor- 
ation, that any member who may go out of the same to evade the 
public meeting, or for any other reason; before they can again be 
admitted into the society, must pay the sum of ten shillings stg. 

34. — That each stranger journeyman at his entry to his service with his new 
master is to pay one shilling sterling into the box, and another 
for drink. 
1788 35. — 8M Aprily 1788. — That whosoever of the said trade shall damnify any of 
the public utensils they shall be liable to pay whatever the Deacon 
and Quarter-Mastek shall determine in order to repair the damage. 
The judges always to be ignorant of the aggressor." 



CHAPTER III. 

^789 ^ T this date the Weavers' Corporation appears, through 

poverty, to have been unable to carry out their desire to 

introduce the fly shuttle, and the following letter was 

sent to Dr Douglas requesting his assistance in their extremity, — 



A' 



" Sir, 

Wee supos that you heave heard the repited Complents of oure 
Cloths beeing so narow which oblidged us to adapt the lids (Leeds) plan in 
Erecting Fly Shuttls and indead many of us is Standing indeted to the Trads- 
man for the expence oing to our want of Stok but what ads still to the 
misfortan the friction the whiels cases upon the Slits heath rendered our 
stok almost Euseles and the read makers tells us that nothing but stiell reads 
will stand which is altogether out of our pour to purchiss and we are pur- 
suaded that if the matter was represented to the Honrable boord of Trustes 
by any kind person they ould len ther aid to purchiss such a nesaser thing 
for unless wee be helpit wee will be redused to our old way which we are 
Convinced mos be much to the hurt of our Cloths in the way of Imprafment 
and what a pity it is for a bout Fifty Looms daly Imployd should not be 
incuriged to work upon the best plan and if the Bord was mead aquented with 
thes matters of Fack and grant ther asistence we ould oblidg Each person to 
pay as much as should be found nesisary to support the stok." 

Such was the earnest cry and prayer of the Weavers' Cor- 
poration in the olden time, and it was fortunate for them and 
for the future of the town, that it was addressed to no 
unwilling ear. Doubtless, the wisdom of the Corporation was 
engaged in drawing up this epistle which affords such an object- 
lesson on the state of education in Galashiels a little over a 
century ago. Possibly at the request of Dr Douglas, the 
following letter was written and addressed to him by some one 
more conversant with the ordinary form observed in such cases, — 

*' Sir, 

We beg the favour of you when in Ed*" to take some proper oppor- 
tunity of waiting on the Honble board of Trustees on our behalf. You are 
well acquaint both with our worldly circumstances and with what pertains to 

;386 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



287 



our business, and therefore we leave it to you either to represent our case by 
word or writing as you shall find to be best for our interest. We think that 
in conversation you could set forth many little particulars which could not be 
brought into a petition. But if a petition is necessary we empower you to 
draw up and present one in our name for some aid from the board toward 
providing a complete set of brass or steel reeds to answer our fly shuttles 
which we find will soon destroy and render useless our timber ones. During 
the 8 or 9 months that we have used these fly shuttles we have wrought 
more in a day, and our work is much easier for our persons, and fully better 
than with the common shuttles, but the poverty of most of our number 
makes us equally unable to bear the expense of purchasing steel or brass 
reeds and must of course oblige us to lay aside fly shuttles, and even of 
keeping ourselves in common reeds. We have taken the liberty of giving 
you a memorandum of a few facts, some of which you know of yourself, and 
the rest can be well attested if required. From these you can make up a 
petition or memorial for the information of the Trustees if they desire it, or if 
you judge it necessary to serve us, your trouble in this and every other case 
will be gratefully acknowledged by us all weavers in Galashiels. 
March 3, 1789. 



George Chisholm, 
William Sanderson, 
William Brown, 
Will. Dobson, 
John Clapperton, 
William Chisholm, 
Robert Frier, 
George Clapperton, 
James Hislope, 



Robert Heitly, 
Thomas Speedin, 
Will. Hislop, 
Simon Atchison, 
George Brown, 
John Sanderson, 
William Cochran, 
John Cochran, 
Thomas Pringle, 



Andrew Clapperton, 
Thomas Lunn, 
Robert Scott, 
Andrew Thomson, 
Robert Walker, 
Thomas Walker, 
James Brown, 
John Dobson, 
Archibald Cochran." 



It appears from the above petition that fly shuttles, which 
had been invented by John Kay of Bury in 1738, were intro- 
duced into Galashiels in 1788, fifty years afterwards. 

The following is a copy of the rriemorandum referred to in 
the petition to Dr Douglas, and is interesting on account of the 
light it throws upon the condition of the weaving trade of the 
town a century ago, — 

** A long time ago, the weavers in and near Galashiels found it convenient 
to form themselves into a kind of Incorporation. One principal advantage 
was providing a stock of reeds for their common behoof, for it was not within 
the power of every individual to furnish himself with reeds of every size for 
which he might have occasion. The coarsest reeds which they use are of 12 
porter, or 1 2 times 40 threads in the warp, the finest is 24 porter, or 24 times 



288 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

40 threads in the warp. They have in all 13 different sizes of reeds, and 
generally 5, often 6 and sometimes 9 or 10 sets of every size. To these reeds 
from 45 to 50 looms have access when needful. The present number of looms 
at work is 47. To repair or replace these reeds costs at an average about £2 
stg., which is defrayed by levying one penny for every web of 20 yards 
wrought in reeds of 19 porter and upwards, and one halfpenny for the same 
length woven in reeds below 19 porter. Though some individuals who can 
afford it have a few sets of reeds for themselves of the particular size they 
commonly use, yet the generality partly from inability and partly from choice 
use and pay for the reeds of the Incorporation. Since May last when fly 
shuttles were introduced, the destruction of reeds has been so great as far to 
exceed their funds, and put it out of their power to replace them. The price 
of reeds made from cane or wood run from 3s to 5s 6d per set, and the 
destruction of them by one man working constantly with the fly shuttle cannot 
be less than five set of reeds or 22s every year, an expense which even the. 
economical plan of a common stock cannot support. This expense is not 
balanced by the profits of the fly shuttle, for although with one of them a man 
can work 4 or 5 yards more in a day of better work and with less fatigue, yet 
the expense of purchasing and mounting them (27s 6d) is heavy on a 
poor man with a numerous family, and the additional wages which he earns 
by them in a day being at an average only of about fivepence will scarcely 
defray that expense, and pay for the consumpt of reeds. There being also a 
necessity for an immediate outlay to supply the loss of reeds that the work 
may not stop, and the earnings of weavers not affording to advance it, many 
of them have run in arrears to the Incorporation, and some have hitherto not 
been able to pay for their fly shuttles. Yet to give up these shuttles after 
they are already used in 24 looms and 10 or 12 are ready to be mounted in 
other looms, would evidently be losing great advantages. Beside working 
a greater quantity with less fatigue, softer woof can be closer driven, which 
makes better cloth, and webs can with equal ease and expedition be woven as 
broad as the loom will admit. With the hand shuttle the broader the web so 
much greater the toil, and less the quantity wrought, but the breadth of a 
web makes little or no odds as to toil or quantity with the fly shuttle. And as 
complaints have long been made of the narrowness of Galashiels cloth, the 
use of that shuttle will enable the weavers to make it so wide as to dress 
into a full yard English, or at least into the half breadth of the English 7/4 
cloth. That they may retain fly shuttles they, had thoughts of procuring iron, 
steel or brass reeds from Leeds, but on inquiry found that complete sets of 
these would far exceed their ability, as they could" not be purchased under 
£S^9 costing from 12s to 20S'each, and five sets of each size being needed at 
an average to keep all their looms going. Should the Board please to give 
this sum or the sets of brass, steel or iron reeds it can purchase, they will 
submit to any conditions or regulations which the Board shall think necessary 
and they will find security to uphold them and even to increase their number 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 289 

by levying double the present rates for working with them. If the Board 
shall not be prevailed upon to grant the whole, three sets of them shall be 
cheerfully accepted, though the weavers are sorry to add that nothing less 
can enable them to continue the use of the fly shuttle." 

Notwithstanding the number of rules the Corporation had 
1803 already in force, the following were added in 1803, — 

"36. — That any upsetting member shall pay into the trade the sum of 15s stg. 

(N.B.), all men serving in the trade the full time of his or their 

apprenticeships. 
1806 37. — 26th July y 1806. — That any person wishing to join the Corporation (not 

serving his time therein), must pay the sum of two pounds stg. for 

the same, likewise two shillings for drink. 
38. — That any member has liberty to take in an apprentice for three vears (to 

learn the woollen only). 
39. — ^That no member can employ a journeyman without^howing a certificate 

that he has served a regular apprenticeship. 

1808 40. — 28/A February y 1808. — That whosoever of the said trade takes or seeks 

work over another tradesman's head, or shall submit to carry his 
work to be inspected by any other person than his employer only, 
shall pay into the box of the Incorporation the full sum of forty 
shillings stg., t.q. 

41. — ^That if any member fall in arrears to the trade and does not make pay- 
ment within one year from the date when it becomes due, he shall be 
deprived of all privileges belonging to the Corporation. 

42. — Its settled and agreed to by the Corporation of Weavers in Galashiels 
that there will be no more service at any Funeral belonging to any 
member of the said Corporation. 

1809 43. — 2SthJulyy 1809. — That if any former member wishes to join the Corpor- 

ation, before they can be admitted they must pay up their arrears, 
and also Seven Shillings stg. for their freedom to the same before 
they can be re-admitted. 
18 ID 44. — ist Octohevy 1810. — Its statute and agreed to by the Corporation of 
Weavers that a majority of the same body (legally assembled) shall 
regulate the same, all acts to the contrary notwithstanding.** 

At this time a little episode occurred in connection with the 
weavers, which is thus referred to by Walter Scott in a letter 
to Sou they, — 

** Last week learning that a meeting was to be held among the weavers 
of the large manufacturing village of Galashiels, for the purpose of cutting a 
man's web from the loom, I apprehended the ringleaders and disconcerted 

S 



290 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

the whole project. But in the course of my inquiries imagine my surprise 
discovering a bundle of letters and printed manifestoes, from which it appeared 
that the Manchester Weavers' Committee corresponded with every manu- 
facturing town in the south and west of Scotland, and levies .a subsidy of 
2s 6d per man (an immense sum) for the ostensible purpose of petitioning 
Parliament for redress of grievances, but doubtless to sustain them in their 
revolutionary movements. " 

1813 On the 25th December, 181 3, another rule to the following 
effect was added, — 

"45. — That any person wishing to enter the Corporation as a journeyman (not 
serving his time or apprenticeship within the same) must pay into the 
box the sum of los stg.'* 

18 14 On the 1st January, 18 14, the Weavers' Corporation pre- 
sented Dr Douglas with a very handsome and valuable tea vase 
with an appropriate inscription, expressive of their gratitude for 
his unwearied efforts to promote their prosperity. 

1820 On the 2ist Octdber, 1820, the foregoing rules and 

regulations, added since 17th July, 1669, were presented to 
John Scott of Gala and George Craig, his Bailie depute, and 
were approved of and ratified by them. 



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I 



CHAPTER IV. 

1 82 1 y N 1821 the kettles used for dyeing purposes belonging to the 
Corporation went amissing, having been stolen from the 
custody of William Frier, who had been entrusted with 

their safe keeping. After a most diligent search, which lasted 
for two weeks, they were discovered in Neidpath wood, between 
Yair and Clovenfords, having evidently been used for illicit 
distillation. 

1822 Ini822a new flag was procured and displayed for the first 
time at the annual procession. It cost jQjy 3s 4d, and the Cor- 
poration was so well pleased with the manner in which William 
Rule of Jedburgh had painted it that they allowed him an extra 
five shillings. 

1829 Between this date and 1829 other ten rules were added, 

but they possess no new feature calling for remark, being 
similar in every respect to some of those already recorded. 

A pronounced characteristic of these old obsolete laws was 
the jealousy which their framers showed concerning the admission 
of outsiders to their privileges. A very curious instance, 
which may possibly have arisen from racial dislike, is furnished 
by the records of the Newcastle Corporation of Weavers in 
1527. This society decreed that no member should take a 
Scotsman for apprentice, or set any of that nation to work, 
under a peVialty of forty shillings. Another instance showing 
the power possessed by these Corporations in the olden times 
is mentioned in the records of the Board of Trustees. It 
is stated that Alexander Kidd, weaver, Leith, requested the 
Board to defend him in a lawsuit raised against him by the 
Canongate Incorporation of Weavers for weaving woollen cloth, 
he not being a freeman of that body. The Board were at a loss 
how to act in the matter, and they applied to Lord Kames 
for his opinion and advice. They were warned against interfering 

291 



292 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

in the case, as they would assuredly fail if they attempted to 
defend Kidd, because the Act of Parliament which made linen 
weaving free made no reference to the weaving of woollen 
cloth. 

These old weavers must not only have been Protectionists 
of the first water, but also devout believers in hereditary succes- 
sion and in the rights of the first-born; for, while they exacted a 
heavy fee from all who became members of their Corpor- 
ation, they admitted the eldest son of a member at a nominal 
payment. These regulations show the jealous fearfulness with 
which these Corporations guarded their privileges, and how ready 
they were to cry out, *'This our craft is in danger.*' 
1839 At a meeting held in 1839 the following motion was 

adopted, — 

** That as some members have refused to pay the usual sum of sixpence for 
pies and porter, without giving notice prior to such being ordered, they shall 
be charged by the Corporation to that amount, as the sale of such pies and 
porter is the only remuneration the landlord receives for the use of the room." 

In those days the *^ mortcloth'' bulked largely in the 
belongings of the Weavers* Corporation. This was the name 
of the pall, made of black velvet, which covered the coffin 
while being carried to the place of burial. An agreement had 
been entered into between the heritors and the Corporation 
whereby for a consideration it enjoyed the privilege of having 
a mortcloth for the use of the members. It transpired, 
however, that, in order to add to the funds, the practice 
had crept in of letting it out to any person at thie reduced 
rate of two shillings for the large, and one shilling for 
the small one. This custom the heritors resented on the 
ground that the weavers by this action were depriving the 
poor's fund of the fees payable for the use of the parish mort- 
cloth. They accordingly gave notice to the Weavers' Cor- 
poration to desist from allowing their mortcloth to be used by 
non-members, otherwise legal proceedings would be taken to 
restrain them. The^weavers met and came to the conclusion 
that they were within their rights, the heritors having no 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 293 

title to interfere. No reply was made to the communication, 
but notices were put up on public places intimating their 
readiness to hire out their mortcloth to any requiring it. When 
this came to the ears of the heritors, they gave instructions to 
their agent to raise an action for interdict, but, for some unex- 
plained reason, they departed from their resolution, and nothing 
further was done regarding it. 
1840 In the month of June, 1840, all the old laws and regulations 

were rescinded, and a new set, numbering fourteen, was sub- 
mitted to the Corporation and adopted. These were a condensed 
edition of those they had discarded, dealing with the amount of 
entry money, apprentice fees, and penalties. The presentation 
of a pair of gloves to the Deacon, in the event of a member being 
married, was retained, and the fourteenth rule appointed that, — 

*'The Corporation mortcloth be given out to those not members of the 
Corporation at a charge of is for the large and 6d for the small one, and the 
keeper was empowered to give it gratis to any he might consider in indigent 
circumstances." 

1842 On the i6th March, 1842, at a general meeting, a motion 

was proposed to the following effect, viz. : — **That the property 
of the Weavers' Corporation be divided amongst the members/* 
An amendment **that the surplus funds be laid out in the 
establishment of a provision store" was carried. All arrange- 
ments were accordingly made, premises suitable for a shop and 
the services of a store-keeper were secured. This action, how- 
ever, was opposed by a minority, who requested the Deacon to 
call a general meeting for the purpose of reconsidering the 
resolution. The meeting was held but no agreement was 
arrived at. An interdict was served upon the Deacon, and the 
majority resolved to defend their action in the matter. At a 
subsequent meeting it was agreed to divide the surplus funds, to 
dispose of the reeds and pickers, to admit no new members, and 
advertise the dissolution of the Corporation. Accordingly, the 
surplus funds were divided, each member receiving the sum of 
7s 6d. At the next meeting the motion to dissolve the Corpor- 
ation was rescinded by a majority of seven votes. 



^94 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

In the following year a joint-stock company started 
to supply reeds, and the weavers now resolved to dissolve 
their Corporation, provided they had the power. The opinion 
of the Solicitor-General was taken on the question, who advised 
them *'that should one member object to the proposed 
dissolution he would succeed in his objection before a civil 
tribunal.*' The Corporation was therefore carried on, and in 

1847 1847 another division of the funds took place, each member 
receiving 5s and an old reed, which could not be otherwise 
disposed of. In 1850 there were 256 members, but from that 
date it fell off to such an extent that four years afterwards 
the income was unable to balance the expenditure. The 
Corporation struggled on till September 20th, 1854, when the 
last general meeting was held. 

The next reference to its affairs occurs on the 20th May, 

^875 1875, when the members of committee met and agreed to 
dispose of the few remaining reeds. At another meeting, 
held shortly afterwards, it was reported that Adam Cochrane, 
manufacturer, had consented to relieve them of the reeds at 
valuation, also that he was willing to become the custodian of 
the Weavers* Corporation minute book, flag, and two sashes. 
It was agreed to give him the reeds at his own price, and also to 
hand over the property of the Corporation into his keeping 
conditionally, 

" That the Committee reserve all right and claim on behalf of the Weavers' 
Corporation to the said minute book, flag, and sashes; but that Mr Cochrane 
may and can use them as his wish may direct, unless required by the 
Weavers' Corporation, and that all applications for the same will be made by 
two at least of the undersigned, 

(Signed) Thomas Pringlb. 

George Mercer, Clerk. 

Andrew Ballantynb, Vice-Deacon. 

Like the clothiers and dyers, the weavers dined together 
annually, and the following are a few of the occasions, — 

1811. — 70 dined in George Haldane's (The Hall), the first reckoning being 5s, 
the second a% 6d, also is 6d for supper. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



295 



1820. — SS dined in George Scott's (The Fleece Inn), the first reckoning 5s, 

second for married people 2s, and 3s for the lads. 
182 1. — 83 dined in Thomas Murray's (The Bridge Inn), amongst them being 

John Scott, Esq. of Gala, and Mr George Craig, his depute; first 

reckoning 5s, second for married people is, and is 6d for the lads. 
1825. — 54 dined in Mr Martin's (The Ordinance Arms), first reckoning 5s, 

second 6d. 
1828. — 55 dined in Mr William Dickson's (Harrow Inn)." 

Such is the little history of the oldest Corporation in the 
town, so far at least as can be gleaned from the scanty records 
which yet remain testifying to its being. It had existed for 
over two hundred years, and in the early days of the village its 
Deacon and office-bearers were considered men of light and 
leading. It served its day and generation, till, crippled by the 
march of improvement, the advent of the power-loom completed 
its downfall, and swept away an industry which at one time was 
the oldest and principal handicraft in Galashiels, only serving 
now to furnish another instance that 



* ' Our little systems have their day, 
They havp their day and cease to be." 



manufacturers' flag. 



CHAPTER V. 



158 



■A' 



The Manufacturers' Corporation. . 

already recorded, waulk mills existed at Galashiels in 
1 58 1, and the weavers belonging to the village were 
incorporated in 1666. Beyond these two facts there 
remains no record in connection with the trade in those early 
years of its history. In 1729 a wool-sorter was established in 
the town for the purpose of improving the prevailing method 
^733 of preparing wool for spinning. In 1733 a reference was made 
by Sir Patrick Lindsay to the manufacture of * 'Galashiels Greys," 
which, according to his description, was the name of an extremely 
coarse and inferior quality of woollen cloth. 

In the records of the Board of Trustees for Manufactures in 
Scotland, various references are made to the progress of the local 
1774 industry from 1727 and onward. In 1774 the Rev. Robert 
Douglas, minister of Galashiels, stated that the wool used at 
that date was obtained in the district, the yarn being woven into 
blankets and cloth styled ''Galashiels Greys;" these he char- 
acterised as a coarse and inferior imitation of Yorkshire Medleys. 

296 



• HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 297 

In 1774 the quantity of wool spun and woven into cloth by the 
clothiers in the village amounted to 722 stones, and this Mr 
Douglas styled ''manufacturing woollen goods to a great 
extent. ^' This quantity of wool was divided among the 
clothiers in the following proportions, — 

"George Mercer, 152 stones; Thomas Blaikie, 136; John Roberts, 106; John 
Cramond, 65; William Blaikie, 60; Andrew Grey, 42; William Gill, 36; John 
Mercer, 34; James Williamson, junr., 28; GeOrge Paterson, 21; John Lees, 21; 
and James Small, 21." 

1777 In 1777 the Manufacturers* Corporation was inaugurated, 

but it would seem that only a portion of those engaged in the 
trade at that period were connected with it. The following is 
the official record of its formation, — 

** Galashiels, the last day of December, one thousand seven hundred and 
seventy seven years, the following manufacturers met and thought it 
convenient to be constituted and erected into a Corporation, and immediately 
a seal of cause was wrote upon stampt paper by Mr James Blaikie, school- 
master, and sig^ned by Mr Scott of Gala. The Constitutors were, James 
Williamson, George Mercer, Thomas Blaikie, John Cramond, William Gill, 
James Small, John Lees, Robert Grieve, John Roberts, and Andrew Grey, who 
all agreed to meet once a year on the above mentioned day and settle such 
things as might come before them." 

1785 This arrangement continued till 1785, when the date of the 

meeting was changed, as thus recorded, — 

" Being gathered into a greater body, they choose the day after Michaelmas 
Fair, thinking it a more convenient season for their public procession.'* 

Previous to this time no minute of their proceedings nor 
list of members had been kept, and the following names of the 
Deacons, with the dates of their appointment, are all that is 
recorded for the subsequent six years, — 

" 1785, James Mercer. 1786, John Roberts. 1787, Richard Lees. 
1788, Adam Cochrane. 1789, Robert Walker. 1790, William Johnstone." 

1 790 In 1 790 the Corporation consisted of the following members, 

viz. : — 



298 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

** William Johnstone, Darlingshaugh. George Mercer, Wilderhaugh. 

Robert Walker, ,, James Mercer, „ 

John Lees, Buckholmside. Andrew Henderson, Galashiels. 

Richard Lees, ,, Robert Gill, Galashiels. 

James Walker, ,, John Roberts, „ 

Hugh Sanderson, Galashiels. James Roberts, „ 

Alexander Small, „ Andrew Gray, „ 

Adam Cochrane, ., David Grieve, „ 

William Berry, „ James Sanderson, Gordon. 

Walter Messer, Lauder. Alex. Sanderson, Melrose. 

John Gray, Dryburgh. Robert Boyd, Stow. 

John Nicol, Melrose." 

In the official records no mention is hitherto vofl^de of any 
laws in connection with the Corporation. In 1790 the following 
regulations were drawn up and agreed to, — 

** L — That each member shall have an indenture on his apprentice before the 
expiration of fourteen days, under the penalty of half-a-crown, and if 
six weeks, what the trade shall think proper, and the money to be 
paid into the public funds. 
H. — That any manufacturer in the town or neighbourhood of Galashiels who 
is not a member shall pay one shilling stg. for each pair of shears 
that is ground upon the stone belonging to the trade, whereas each 
member only pays one penny stg., for each pair. 

HI. — That if any member of the Corporation shall have sons, any one of them 
who has served an apprenticeship to any master of the trade within 
the Corporation shall be received a member and have a right to all 
the privileges thereof upon paying into the common box of the trade, 
for the eldest son two shillings and sixpence stg., and any other 
of the sons of the same family shall pay for their admission as other 
apprentices within the Corporation, viz., five shillings stg. 

IV. — That those who have served an apprenticeship without the Corporation 
shall not be allowed the privileges thereof under the sum of seven 
shillings stg. 

V. — Each master shall pay into the trades box two shillings and sixpence 
stg. for each of his apprentices at their entry to him, likewise the 
sons of members shall pay the same excepting the eldest son, who 
is free." 

The articles belonging to the Corporation at this period 
were: — A -teasing *' willow,** or ** willy," as it was generally 
termed, which was procured in 1782. This machine was driven 



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. HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 299 

by hand and teased all the wool used in the village. It was put 
up to auction annually, and the lessee was obliged not to charge 
more than *' two pence per stone at most and as much less as he 
pleases.'' There was also a grinding stone of large diameter 
which was required for sharpening the shears used in cropping 
the cloth. It occupied an erection adjoining the Waulkmillhead 
Mill. A pair of smith's bellows, a flag and sashes used in the 
annual procession, and a chest for holding the same completed 
the list. The flag was destroyed on the occasion of a 
Michaelmas dinner a number of years ago, but nothing is known 
regarding the ultimate fate of the sashes. So far as can be 
learned, the design and motto of the flag in question was similar 
to that of the Dyers' Corporation, which is now carefully 
preserved in the reading room of the Public Library. 

In the columns of the British Chronicle of January ist, 
1790, reference is thus made to the infant industry, — 

** Woollen mills have been erected at Hawick and Galashiels, and notwith- 
standing the great obstruction to manufactories arising from the scarcity of 
fuel, the woollen manufacture is likely to be established in the border counties 
of Scotland. It is with additional pleasure we hear that the gentlemen in 
that part of Scotland propose to give the only effectual encouragement to the 
growing manufacture by using it for livery cloth for their servants, an 
example worthy of imitation in any other part of the country where the 
woollen trade is established." 

A few months afterwards the following paragraph appeared 
in the same publication, — 

* * We congratulate our readers on the prosperity of the manufactures of 
this country, particularly the woollen. The improvements in this branch in the 
small town of Galashiels are really surprising. To their praise be it said that 
their broad-cloths, baize, and blankets may vie with some, nay, with many of 
our southern neighbours, not less a sum than ^^65 being alloted them as 
premiums on their woollen articles for last year. 

• O the bra' lads o' Gala Water.' 
It gives the most flattering prospects of the rising genius, industry, and 
perseverance of the manufacturers of that village/' 

At this time there were forty-three looms in the village, and 
about two hundred and forty women belonging to the district 



300 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

were employed in spinning yarn for the Galashiels trade, the 
price paid per slip being sixpence, and this quantity was con- 
sidered a fair day's work. 

Hand cards for preparing the wool for spinning had been 
used for centuries, but it was not till the middle of the eighteenth 
century that any attempt was made to improve these primitive 
appliances. The first improvement consisted in fixing a large 
card upon a table, and suspending over it two smaller ones 
called stock cards. By this means double the amount of 
work could be got through in a day compared with the old 
system. Another primitive method of carding the wool was by 
means of what was termed a *' Scribble Dick,'* which was used 
in the village in the early years of the trade. 

The earliest mode of spinning was by means of the distaff, 
and this served the purpose till the middle of the fourteenth 
century, when spinning by wheel was invented. The **muckle 
wheel'' was generally used in this district. The appliance con- 
sisted of a fly wheel with a broad rim, carrying a cord which set 
the spindle in motion. The spinner imparted a rapid motion to 
the wheel, and, as it continued to revolve, she moved slowly 
backwards, thus drawing out and spinning the *'rowinV' as the 
prepared wool was termed, to the required grist. When suf- 
ficient twist had been imparted to the thread it was wound on 
the spindle, and a fresh impetus being given to the wheel, the 
operation was repeated. As the trade extended, a more 
expeditious method of producing yarn was required, and about 
the year 1754, Hargreave, Arkwright, and others invented the 
spinning jenny, which caused a revolution in textile manu- 
factures. Machinery driven by water or steam power was 
applied to carding and spinning, and subsequent inventors have 
brought these machines to a high degree of perfection. 



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T' 



CHAPTER VI. 

1 79 1 r I ^HE year 1791 was an important one in the history of the 
woollen trade in Galashiels, and a new era dawned upon 
the manufacturing of woollen yarn. Carding machines 
had been invented in 1760, and were in use in England. 
In 1784 George Mercer, manufacturer in Wilderhaugh Mill, 
went to Leeds for the purpose of improving his knowledge in the 
manufacturing of woollen cloth, where he saw the machines at 
work. In 1791 he procured a scribbler and shortly afterwards 
he added a carder, a billy with twenty-six, and a jenny with 
thirty-six spindles. An addition was made to the mill for the 
purpose of containing the new machinery, this being the first 
woollen factory in Scotland in the modern sense of the word. 
James Roberts of Galashiels had also procured a jenny with 
twenty-four spindles, his son having learned to spin in England, 
and thus the tedious, unsatisfactory, and expensive hand process 
was superseded. It was not long ere public attention was 
directed to the advantages to be derived from the new method; 
wool was now spun by machinery for fourpence halfpenny per 
slip. The total quantity manufactured in the village in 1791 
had risen to 2916 stones. 

The manufacturers in Hawick were the first to avail them- 
selves of the improved system. Instead of continuing their old 
practice of distributing wool in small quantities among women 
in that town, they sent batches weighing from forty to fifty lbs. 
to Galashiels to be carded by the new machinery. As at that 
date there was no road between the two towns for wheeled 
traffic, the wool was carried in panniers slung across the back of 
a pony. The carrier left Hawick with a batch of wool and 
returned with the previous batch carded ready for spinning. 

The new carding machines consisted of two single cylinders, 
a scribbler and carder, the former thirty-two inches and the 

301 



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302 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

latter twenty-seven inches wide. What was termed a **set*' of 
this description produced from forty-eight to seventy-two lbs. of 
**rowin**' per day according to the quality of the wool. In 
connection with the different processes in the manufacture of 
cloth, employment was provided for about thirty persons for 
each set of machines at work. At this time the weekly value 
of finished goods was about ;^5o, consisting of fourteen 
pieces each twenty-four yards long, at the average price of three 
shillings per yard. Labour was poorly paid, the wages of 
a journeyman dyer being jCs per annum and board. The 
goods were twenty-seven inches wide, dyed in the piece, raised 
with hand cards, and cropped with hand shears. They were 
heavily felted after being dyed, and the principal desideratum in 
a finished piece was to have it firm in the texture and lustrous 
on the face, this being accomplished by raising, cropping, and 
hot pressing. The shearing or cropping of the cloth had 
always been a difficult and expensive operation, and was per- 
formed in the following manner, — the cloth being stretched over 
a frame in front of the workman, was brushed over with hand 
cards for the purpose of raising the loose fibres of the wool 
and laying them all in one direction. When the whole web was 
gone over in this manner it was passed to the *^ clipper,*' whose 
apparatus consisted of a long stool, or bench, the top of which 
was cushioned, and a pair of large and peculiarly shaped shears. 
These shears measured four feet three inches in length, the 
blades being twenty-four inches long by six inches in width. 
One of them was curved to fit the top of the cushion, the other 
being set up at a right angle, and the edge hollowed to 
correspond to the circle on the other blade. At the other end of 
the shears was a bow spring about fourteen inches in diameter; 
the whole apparatus was bulky and cumbersome in the highest 
degree, weighing no less than thirty-five pounds. So far as 
known, only two pairs are in existence, one in the possession of 
R, & A. Sanderson & Co., Gala Mills, and the other is preserved 
at Beechwood by Andrew H. Herbertson. Owing to their size, 
weight, and peculiar form, there was some difficulty experienced 




HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



303 



in getting them properly ground, but this was at length over- 
come by bringing a professional cutler from Sheffield to do the 
work. The raising is now done by teazles, fixed in a cylinder, 
which require to be brought from the south of England or 
France, the climate of Scotland being found unsuitable for 
growing them. Cropping is now much better done by the 
*' Yankee," an American invention, brought to Galashiels by 
James Paterson in 18 19. 

The introduction of the machinery had evidently given an 
impetus to the trade, as on March 24th, 1791, it is recorded that 
a number of the members of the Manufacturers' Corporation met 
at the house of William Johnstone, Deacon, and agreed that a 
Cloth Hall should be built in the village for the reception and 
sale of woollen goods. For easily ascertaining the share of each 
individual, it was agreed that shelves be erected and a rent 
of forty shillings per annum charged for each shelf. The 
remainder of the building not occupied by the members of the 
Corporation was to be let to non-subscribers, and the proceeds 
applied to any purpose the Corporation thought proper. It was 
also agreed that no member could have less than one, or more 
than three shelves, on any pretext whatever. The members of 
the Corporation who applied for shelves were, — 



** Richard Lees, i; 

Hugh Sanderson, 1; 
William Johnston, 2; 
James Walker, 2; 



Andrew Henderson, i ; 
James Roberts, i; 

Robert Walker, 2; 
David Grieve, 2; 



Alexander Small, i. 

George Mercer, 3. 

Adam Cochrane, 2. 

Robert Gill, 2. 



No time was lost, and an advertisement was issued in these 
terms, — 



** As a Cloth Hall is to be built at Galashiels for the reception and sale of 
woollen goods, any person willing to contract for the mason and wright work, 
slating, and plastering, either together or separately, may see the plans, and 
be informed of particulars by applying to William Johnston, clothier, Gala- 
shiels, and it is desired that tradesmen will attend with their estimates at the 
house of Thomas Cleghorn, Galashiels Mill, on Saturday, 7th May, 1791, at 
four o'clock afternoon, when they will be taken into consideration, and a 
bargain concluded." 



304 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 



The foundation-stone of the Hall was laid on 4th June, and 

** The Corporation, with a number of patriotic gentlemen, walked in procession 
from the deacon's to the cross, and laid the foundation-stone with the usual 
ceremony, then returned to Mrs Craig's and spent the remaining part of the 
evenitig in the most convivial manner." 

During the progress of the work, the following advertisement 
was issued, — 

'* A Hall is building at Galashiels for the reception and sale of woollen 
goods. Subscribers to the Hall of one guinea shall be proprietors to that 
extent, admitted members of the Incorporation of Clothiers, and entitled to 
attend and vote at their annual meetings. Manufacturers recommended by 
two or more subscribers shall be allowed the use of the Hall for selling their 
goods at an easier rate than others who are not subscribers, or recommended 
by two or more of them." 

In response to this announcement the undernoted gentlemen 
qualified themselves for membership by contributing the required 
amount, — 



"James Pringle, Torwoodlee. 
Andrew Davidson, Middleton. 
Earl of Buchan. 

Andrew Ogilvie of Branksholm. 
Sir Henry Hay. 
Sir Walter Elliot of Stobs. 
Sir G. Douglas of Spring woodpark. 
John Rutherford, Edgerston. 
Andrew Plummer, Sunderlandhall. 
Alexander Pringle of Whytbank. 
Thomas Ogilvie of Chesters. 
Right Hon. Mr Baillie of Mellarston. 
Captain Scott of Gala, 26th Regiment. 
Joseph Waugh, London. 
John Watson, Crosslee. 
Adam Mercer, Bow. 
Alexander Scott, Ashkirk. 
R. Hogarth, Carfrae. 
J. Stewart, Byrewalls. 
Charles Simpson, Longcroft. 
Robert Paterson, Tollishill. 
John Thomson, Little Swinton. 
Robert Horsburgh, Colquhare. 
John Simpson, Dimpleknowe. 



John Tod, Kirklands. 

Lord Napier. 

Mark Pringle, Fernielea. 

Sir James Pringle, Stichell. 

Archibald Gibson, Ladhope. 

Adam Knox, Galashiels. 

Thomas Curor, Brownmuir. 

Rev. Robert Douglas, Galashiels. 

William Harr of Harrfield. 

Peter Oliver. 

Thomas Cleghorn, Galashiels. 

Mr Green, Newcastle 

Archibald Tod, Drygrange. 

Mr Wilson, 6 Old Bond Street London. 

John Brown, Leeds. 

Richard Sheriff. 

William Simpson, Headshaw. 

John Simpson, Adinstone. 

J. Fisher, Clackmae. 

Peter Mirtle, Boon. 

John Murray, Skaithmuir. 

John Murray, Clarilaw. 

Thomas Gibson, Cardrona. 

Thomas Horsburgh, Lee." 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 305 

In addition to the foregoing contributions, smaller amounts 
were also received, raising the total tO;^68, 5s 6d, of which James 
Pringle of Torwoodlee procured subscriptions amounting to 
£2^9 19s, and John Watson, Crosslee, ;^20, 19s, 

The Hall cost ;£^230, to meet which there were the above 
subscriptions of ;^68, 5s 6d, a bill for;^ioo from John Bathgate 
of Claydubs, which was endorsed by Adam Cochrane and Richard 
Lees; and a further sum of ;£^6i, 6s was borrowed from Melrose 
Kirk Session on the security of Richard Lees, George Mercer, 
and Robert Gill, both sums bearing interest at five per cent, 

^ At length the building was completed, and on the nth 
October, 1791, the Corporation signalised the event by holding 
within it the annual Michaelnias. dinner, at which seventy-two 
gentlemen were present. At the same meeting the following 
members of the Corporation were chosen directors, viz. : — David 
Grieve, Deacon; Robert Walker, Quarter-master; Richard Lees, 
Quarter-master and Clerk; Adam Cochrane, Box-master; 
Robert Gill, Standard-bearer; and Adam Young, Officer. 

The Hall was opened for the reception and sale of goods on 
1792 the 30th July, 1792, when upwards of 3300 yards of cloth were 
exposed for sale, which was nearly cleared off" in ten minutes, at 
an average price of three shillings per yard. 

The income of the Corporation was at this time derived from 
the rent of the shelves in the Hall, which, for the first year, 
amounted to £40; entry money for apprentices, entries to the 
trade, rent for the ^^willy,*' charge for the use of the grinding 
' ' stone, fines for non-attendance at meetings of the Corporation, 
tax levied on all cloth lodged in the Hall, rent from non-members, 
and rent of Hall for public and other meetings. 

In consequence of the unsatisfactory attendance of the 
members at the Corporation meetings, it was found necessary to 
make the follomng addition to the rules, — 

** VII. — ^That any member refusii\g to appear at the Hall, or any other house 
in the town, when the deacon along with the advice of his committee thinks 
proper to call a meeting, shall pay immediately unto the clerk a fine of one 
shilling, such refusing to pay will be debarred the use of the Hall till such time 
as they shall make payment of the sard fine. '' 

T 



3o6 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 

At the annual meeting on the nth October, 1792, Robert 
Gill was elected Deacon for the following year, and on the next 
day the **willy*' was let for the year to James Roberts for the 
1793 sum of nine shillings. In 1793 the following were admitted 
members, viz. : — ^James Johnstone, William Haldane, and 
Thomas Rae, the last of whom obtained the ^Villy'* for that year 
at a rent of three shillings. At the end of the term it was again 
exposed for competition; but it is evident that it had served its 
day, as Andrew Henderson secured it for two shillings, and 
nothing further is recorded concerning it. 

At this time the price paid for weaving, including winding 
and preparing the yarn, was from twopence to threepence farthing 
per yard. The average wage of a weaver was one shilling and 
sevenpence per day, and a journeyman clothier received four 
shillings per week and board. There were thirteen employers 
in the village, giving employment to fifty persons. 



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CHAPTER VIL 

'797 TN 1797 it was evident that a fair measure of success had 
I attended the efforts put forth by the members of the Cor- 
poration. The number of jennies had increased to eighteen, 
with the prospect of a further addition in the near future. 
These in many cases were erected in the garrets of dwelling- 
houses, and were of course operated by manual labour. There 
is no mention of the number of carding machines in use 
at this time. Owing to the limited capital at the disposal of 
the manufacturers, a set of carding machinery was a heavy 
order, and few of them possessed such. Joint stock companies 
were formed, each shareholder having the use of the machines 
for a certain time, calculated according to the amount of capital 
he had invested. The quantity of wool used in the year had 
now risen to 4944 stones, costing on an average from fourteen 
to fifteen shillings per stone. Some of it cost from twenty-one 
to thirty shillings, and as much as forty-five shillings per stone 
had been paid for small quantities of superior quality. The 
Cheviot fleece possessed qualities almost akin to Merino, and out 
of the picked sorts beautiful fabrics could be manufactured. In 
those days yarn was spun to a degree of fineness that would 
surprise those who are only acquainted with modern machinery. 
Four different buildings had been erected for teasing, scribbling, 
and carding, viz., Wilderhaugh Mill, Ladhope Mill, Botany 
Mill, and the Mid Mill, all possessing water power. Broad looms 
were procured for making blankets eleven quarters wide, and 
machines had been erected for raising the pile upon the cloth 
so that it might be more equally cropped, also for brushing 
away all coarse piles and other substances wliich might adhere 
to it before it was subjected to the shears and after it came 
from the press. There were also improved presses, larger and 
stronger than those formerly used, and ovens for heating the 
metal plates, which were employed in the process of pressing. 

307 



3o8 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

A cylinder had also been procured for glazing worsted stuffs. 
These and other improvements were made at a cost of about 
;^3000 besides the aid afforded by the Board of Trustees. The 
result justified the outlay, the manufacturers were now able to 
produce a larger quantity of cloth of better quality and on shorter 
notice. Cloth was produced from thirty-two to thirty-six inches 
wide, at eight shillings per yard, the cheaper kinds being also 
much improved in width and quality. A considerable amount of 
what was termed '^country work" was also done. The wool and 
yarn belonging to private families were made into cloth, flannels, 
blankets, and worsted stuffs for female wear. There were eight 
fulling mills constantly employed, seventeen clothiers who 
manufactured cloth on their own account for sale, and about 
sixty-four employees working at various branches of the trade, 
besides weavers, whose number had increased to fifty-four. 
There were also about three hundred women spinning yarn in 
their own homes. The introduction of the jennies had reduced 
the number of spinners, but these and other machinery now 
employed gave work in other directions. 

Originally reeling was performed in a very primitive manner, 
the apparatus merely consisting of a straight rod of a fixed length 
having a cross piece at each end. This rod was held by the 
middle with the left hand, the yarn being wound on by the 
motion of the wrist, guided by the other hand. As it took once 
round the appliance to make up the requisite length, this involved 
two motions, which were counted as one. This method was 
abolished by the invention of the '*chack'' reel, which was 
made by inserting four spokes having cross ends into a hub, 
which turned on a spindle fixed upon a supporting frame. 
Attached to the frame was a simple mechanism which registered 
the number of revolutions, at the same time pressing back a 
spring which was released when the cut was complete, giving 
a sharp click as it sprang back into its original position against 
the frame. This idea was again extended to a long reel, operated 
by hand, and latterly the hand labour has been discarded, its 
place being now supplied by power. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 309 

The following verses were written by a member of the Cor- 
poration named George Murray. Whence he came and whither 
he went are alike unknown. He was Deacon of the Corporation 
1801 in 1801, and his name appears in the list of winners of premiums 
between 1802 and 1805. These verses are all that remain to 
testify to his existence and rhyjning abilities. In the early years 
of the century it was a favourite song in the village, and was 
always received with great acceptance at the annual celebration 
of the Michaelmas festivities. 

THE SPINNIN' OT. 

In the days o' lang syne, when auld grannie was young, 
An' the warl' wi' her was beginning o't, 
Wi' her cairds an* her wheel i' the neuk she sat doon. 
To mak' a braw web wi' the spinnin' o't. 

But the folks now-a-days are a' turned sae braw, 
The laird an' the farmer, the cottar an' a', 
That the cairds are laid by, an' the wheel flung awa'. 
And mills maun be built for the spinnin' o't. 

On the palace-like fabric the stranger may gaze, 
An' wondering speir the beginning o't; 
An' when they have told him his mind's in a maze. 
To think it was dune wi' the spinnin' o't. 

Industry's a virtue that's no' easy dung, 
An' here it is practised by baith auld and young; 
For wee things afore they can weel use their tongue, 
Are tied to the task o' the spinning o't. 

That village that stands by the banks o' the Tweed, 
Deserves aye the praise for beginning o't; 
For making o' claith wi' a braw even thread, 
Her bairns are a' guid at the spinning o't. 

When by emulation their minds get a heeze, 
For premiums offered by the Board o' Trustees; 
Then auld Gala's callants, they strive aye to please. 
An' gain the applause for the spinnin' o't. 



3IO HISTORY OF GALASHIHLS. 

Auld Scottish Magg-y^s aye kind to her ain, 
She had a great care in beginning o't; 
An' when they do weel it makes her fu' fain, 
To see them grow guid at the spinnin* o't. 

And you, her dear lasses, sae couthie an* kind, 
May a* yet get sweethearts, a lad to your mind; 
An' when that ye*er marriet ye'll no' be behind 
To lend them a hand at the spinnin' o't. 

1803 The following unique letter was written at this time by an 

Edinburgh merchant to a Galashiels firm. It testifies to the 
estimation in which the *' blue claith " was held, and the anxiety 
displayed to secure a supply, 

''Edinburgh, istjuncy 1803. 
Messrs George Merger & Sons. 
Gentlemen, 

Your letter of yesterday's date is now before me. 
The contents are a disgrace to common sense, to decency, to candour, and 
particularly to men of business. 

I gave you an order so far back as 21st August last, on 25th December 
repeated the order. On ist April I begged you to execute it, and about a 
fortnight ago wrote you by post to send only two pieces. 

In place of executing these orders you grossly insulted me by saying in 
your letter of yesterday that I can be equally well served by applying to 
Clapperton for your goods as he receives them weekly. 

Pray, gentlemen, do you understand what you say ? How is it possible I 
can be so well served with your goods from Clapperton, when his profit must 
be added to yours, unless on the real principle of trade, that you all along 
have overcharged me ? 

I have laid your letter before a man of business and mentioned the 
circumstances; he says it is actionable. 

In the first place, it is actionable because I can prove that before 
yesterday's letter you never said that you could not serve me, on the contrary 
the last time you was here you said to more persons than myself that you 
could serve us all well now. 

In the second place, I can prove that my business has suffered from want 
of these goods, as some of my best customers still wait to be served, relying 
on my word that, according to the last conversation I had with you, you 
would be faithful to your engagement. 

In the third place, I can prove that I refused giving an order, although 
solicited, for Galashiels light blues, because you had promised to execute my 
order. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



311 



1804 



Gentlemen, to be serious, I am determined, if the last two pieces I wrote 
for last do not come with the next week's carrier, to summon you before the 
Court of Session for damages, which I hope will be ample. 

If I had been a bad payer, or a man of doubtful character, there would 
remain some shadow of excuse, but, as the reverse is the case, I am called on 
for the vindication of character, credit, and reputation, to put a stop to such 
an outrag-e to fair trade, as you have been guilty of. 

It is a pity that the whole circumstances of the case should not be printed, 
and distributed through every manufacturing town in Great Britain. 
I am, Gentlemen, Yours etc., 

Thomas Heriot.'* 

Whether or not the threatened action took place cannot 
now be ascertained. Though not disseminated as the irate 
and long-sufFering merchant desired, after nearly a century 
has elapsed the printing of his letter has become an accom- 
plished fact. It displays the many difficulties which the pioneers 
of the trade had to contend with, — not to procure orders, as is 
too often the case at the present day, but to fulfil those that 
would almost appear to have come unsought. 

At the annual meeting held in 1804 ^^e Corporation made 
the following enactment for the regulation of journeymen, which 
is signed by the whole members at that period, — 

** We, the Corporation, find it for our advantage that no journeyman can 
be received into our service unless he has served a regular apprenticeship for 
a term of not less than three years. 

If any of us transgress this rule, a penalty of not less than five pounds 
stg. for each offence shall be inflicted as the majority may think proper. 
George Paterson, Deacon. A. Brodie. John Lees, jun. 

James Bathgate & Son. Thomas Clapperton. Alex. Pringle. 

William Roberts. 
James Sime. 
Robert Walker, jun. 
James Johnstone. 
Geo. Mercer & Sons. 
Hugh Sanderson. 



Adam Dobson. 
Andrew Clapperton. 
W. & D. Thomson. 
George Roberts. 
John Roberts. 
David Grieve. 



William Brown. 
George Murray. 
John Lees & Son. 
Joshua Wood. 
Adam Cochrane. 
Robert Gill. 



1805 From the pages of an old ledger which belonged to one of 

the above members of the Corporation some light is thrown 
upon the conditions under which the trade was carried on at this 
time. The entries extend till 18 18. So far as the owner of 



312 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

this book was concerned, he appears to have done business 
throughout the counties of Midlothian, Fife, Forfar, Kincardine, 
Aberdeen, Banff, Elgin, Perth, and Stirling, with a very limited 
connection in the shires of Selkirk and Berwick, Not only were 
the larger towns visited, but in certain districts every village held 
a customer. Owing to the book being a ledger, the prices of 
the goods do not appear, though, in crediting returns, reference 
is sometimes made to ''D Blues at 5s 3d per yard." The 
accounts represent sums ranging between £4. and jCs^^ trills 
at three and four months are common, and the entries *^By 
dividend," '*Bad debt," and ** Goods returned" occur much 
more frequently than the struggling manufacturer would relish. 
1806 Ii^ 1806, it was found that another regulation had become 

necessary, and, judging from the amount of the penalty, the 
grievance must have been rather severely felt. The reform was 
as undernoted, — 

** We, the clothiers in Galashiels, bind and oblige ourselves not to engage 
or hire any servant that may, or has been previously engaged by any of us, 
until his term of engagement has expired, under the penalty of ;^20 stg., and 
not less than ^^5 stg. 

We further agree and bind ourselves not to keep or allow to work at our 
trade any person after the term of six weeks, without an indenture acknow- 
ledged to be just by the deacon of the trade, under the penalty as above 
mentioned.'' 

Non-attendance at the meetings appears to have been a 
chronic grievance, and the following rule was adopted, — 

1808 ** Be it enacted after this date that any member of the Corporation 

showing a contempt of the Deacon's orders by refusing to attend when he 
judges to call a meeting, shall be fined of the sum of fifteen shillings stg. 
unless he can give a satisfactory excuse." 

When the Cloth Hall was built, Dr Douglas advanced the 
sum of ;^iooo, and from this fund each member of the 
Corporation received two-thirds of the value of his cloth deposited 
there, the balance being paid when the cloth was sold. The 
following statement, drawn up by Dr Douglas, shows the state of 
this account for the years 1810-11, at which date the concern was 
finally wound up, — 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 313 

** Account of Interest due by Clothiers' Co. to Dr Douglas. 

1810 1810. £ ^- ^' £ s. D. 

Feb. 8 — Balance due to Dr Douglas, ... 3561 

Mar. 16 — Interest thereon to i6th March — 36 days, 3 5 J 

Mar. 16 — Drew ... ... 30 o o 



April 13 — Interest on this sum till 13th April — 28 days, 561 4 J 

Paid ;^30 and ;^i8, i8s, ... 48 18 o 



May 23^-Interest on this sum till 23rd May — 40 days, 54 4 i 511 

Drew ... ... ... 27 o o 



June II — Intereston this sum to nth June — 19 days, 27 4 i ' 4^ 

Drew ... ... ... 70 o o 



Balance due Clothiers; Interest till 27th 

June — 16 days, .. ... 42 15 11 

June 27 — Paid ... ... ... 27 o o 



Balance due Clothiers; Interest till 25th 

July— 28 days, ... ... 15 15 11 

July 25 — Paid ... ... ... 789 10 9 



^^S- 3 — Interest on this sum till 3rd August — 8 days, 773 14 10 16 11 J 

Drew ... ... ... 300 o o 



Aug. 4 — Interest to 4th August — i day, ... 473 14 10 i 3J 

„ 4 — Drew ... ... ... 30 o o 



,, 8 — Interest till 8th August — 4 days, ... 443 14 10 4 10 

Drew ... ... ... 100 o o 



„ 14 — Interest till 14th August — 6 days, ... 343 14 10 4 6^ 

Paid ... ... ... 80 o o 



,, 22 — Interest on this sum till 22nd August — 8 days, 423 14 10 9 o:^ 

Drew ;^i8o and paid ;i^4o, hence drew 140 o o 



,, 25 — Interest to 25th August — 3 days ... 283 14 10 ^ sh 

Drew ... ... 6000 



,, 29 — Interest to 29th August — 4 days, ... 223 14 10 25 

Drew ... ... ... 50 o o 



Carry Forward^ £^T^ '4 *o 



314 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Account op Interest Due by Clothiers' Co. to Dr Douglas, Continued, 

£ s. D. £ s. r. 
1810 Brought forward^ 173 14 10 

Sept. 12 — Interest for 14 days, ... ... 6 7 

Drew 



Oct. 10 — Interest to loth October — 28 days 
Paid, 

,, 17 — Interest to 17th October — 7 days, 
Paid ;^7o and drew £y^* Paid 



50 








123 

2% 


14 




10 



<5i 

40 


14 




10 



191 

70 


14 




10 




,, 21 — Interest thereon to 2 1 St November — 1 day, 266 15 11 
Drew ... ... ... 40 o o 



,, 22 — Interest thereon to 22nd November — i day, 216 14 10 
Paid ... ... ... 36 o o 



,, 28 — Interest to 28th November — i day, ... 234 14 10 

Drew ... ... ... 70 o o 



,, 29— Interest to 29th November — i day, ... 164 14 10 

Drew ... ... ... 40 3 o 



,, 20 — Interest thereon to 20th December — 8 days, 24 11 10 
Drew ... ... ... 50 o o 



Balance due Clothiers' Co.; Interest to 26th 

December — 6 days, ... 25 8 2 

,, 26— Paid ... ... ... 70 o o 



Carry Forward y £^ 11 10 



9 5 



2 \o\ 



Nov. 13 — Interest to 13th November — 27 days, 191 14 10 14 i^ 

Paid 

,, 20 — Interest to 20th November — 7 days, 261 14 10 50 

Drew ;^30 and paid ;^24, |8s iid, hence 

drew ... ... ... j; I I 



,, 277— Interest to 27th November — 5. days, 252 14 10 35 

Drew ... ... ... 18 o o 



Dec. 12 — Interest thereon to 1 2th December — 13 days, 124 11 10 4 3 

Drew ... ... ... 100 o o 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 315 

Account of Interest Due by Clothiers* Co. to Dr Douglas, Continued. 

£ s, n. £ s. D. 

181 1 181 1 Brought forward^ 44 ii lo 

J any. 22 — Interest for 29 days, ... ... 3 6 

Drew ... ... ... 19 o o 

Feb. 8— Interest on this sum to 8th February — 19 

days, ... ... 25 II 10 16 



5 5 loi 
Deduct Interest on ;^42, 15s i id for 16 days, j^o i 10 
„ ,. ;£i 5, 15s I id for 28 days, i \\ 

„ „ ;^25, 8s 2d for 6 days, 4^ 



3 4 

Balance due to Dr Douglas ... ... 526^ 

Paid Bank Clerks, ... ... 15 o 



£^ 11 6i' 



If the settlement of the year's transactions was concluded 
on the above basis it would prove a losing business for the 
worthy minister, as on November 21st, it will be observed, he 
makes a very patent mistake of ;^ 10, is id against himself. 

The first fire in the town in connection with a woollen 
factory took place in 181 1 and resulted in Wilderhaugh Mill 
being destroyed. The Board of Trustees refused their assistance 
in re-erecting the building, and in the circumstances George 
Mercer made a proposal to pay ten per cent, on all amounts 
which his friends and neighbours might feel disposed to lend 
him. On these terms he received a considerable amount in sums 
ranging from ;^i5 to jQ^o, by the help of which the works were 
again set agoing. 

With reference to the quality and fineness of the yarn that 
could be made at this time the following statement has been 
recorded, — 

^' There was a hosier in Perth, named Alexander Christie, who used to get 
part of his yarn from Galashiels. He wished to get a description which in 
quality would resemble the Shetland yarn. With this object in view he gave 
an order to W. & D. Thomson. They bought the wool from Leith for the 



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3i6 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

purpose from Cheviot lamb. This they mixed with the pick of the. Cheviot 
fleece, and span the batch to 60 cut. Mr Christie thought this could be 
improved upon, and to meet his wishes one of Mr Thomson's sons went to 
Wilderhaugh mill and endeavoured to get it drawn further. It was done as 
fine as 73 cut on a hand jenny. It was considered if the wool had been carded 
on Wilderhaugh machines, which were new, in consequence bf a fire that had 
recently occurred, it could have been done to 80 cut The wool of this batch 
cost 42s per stone." 

The spinning mules were introduced into Galashiels in 
1814 1814 by W. & D. Thomson^ Most of the earlier jennies had 
only forty-eight spindles, and when they were increased to 
seventy-two the work got rather heavy. When they were driven 
by water power they were increased to 144 spindles, the drawing 
of the yarn and the winding up being performed by hand. In 
consequence of the mules having 500 spindles, they were able to 
produce yarn at a cheaper rate. Owing to the extra number of 
spindles, the rate paid to the spinner was lowered in a propor- 
tionate degree. It is told of this individual, when informed of 
the new arrangement, that he wanted to know **how many 
more spindles would require to be added before he would be 
requested to do his work for nothing?" 

A paragraph in the Kelso Mail in 18 14 states that 

* * The village of Galashiels is in a state of great animation, the woollen 
manufacture being uncommonly busy, and a most rapid advancement has 
been made of late both in the quantity produced and the quality of the goods. 
They meet a ready market and thereby ensure constant employment for old 
and young, who with smiling faces hail the long-wished-for return of peace 
and prosperity." 

The question of non-attendance at the Corporation meetings 
1 816 again cropped up, and in 18 16 it was found oecessary to frame 
a fresh regulation. 

**That in consequence of many of the members absenting themselves 
from the annual meeting, as also the day following when business is settled 
and transferred to the succeeding office-bearers, every member who does not 
appear to give in his apprentices' names and pay their ^ntry, instead of two 
shillings and sixpence shall pay five shillings." 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 317 

1 8 19 At a meeting of the Corporation held in 1819 it was 

unanimously resolved to petition Parliament against the proposed 
tax upon foreign wool. The following statement was drawn up 
and presented to the House of Commons by Colonel Lockhart, 
the member for the county,: — 

"To the Honourable the Commons of Great Britain 
and Ireland assembled, the petition of the 
Corporation of Clothiers in Galashiels 
Humbly sheweth, 

That your petitioners never before approached your honourable house 
with any complaint whatsoever, and, that it is with regret they feel themselves 
called upon to obtrude their situation on your notice. 

For a considerable time past the trade that your petitioners carry on has 
been under a severe depression, and continues every day to grow worse, so 
that a crisis seems fast approaching when our labours, which have long ceased 
to be remunerative, may be suspended altogether, and thereby throw an 
industrious and quiet population out of employment. 

These evils, your petitioners humbly submit, are. partially owing to your 
honourable house having yielded too much to the clamours of the landed 
interest, who have induced your honourable house to depart from generous 
and general principles, and adopt a system of partial legislation, founded on 
an erroneous principle of relieving one class of the community without 
affecting the other. 

Already have the evil effects of this been exemplified in the corn and wool 
trades, the foreigner has no longer an interest in frequenting our harbours, 
where he can neither sell nor exchange his commodity, the consequence of which 
is our relations with other nations are broke off, and the manufactures of the 
country are every day narrowing Xp our own limited and internal consumption. 

In the midst of the most profound peace, and while our rivals are every 
day emerging from the effect of the late war, we are suffering from all the 
evils of a blockade, an indirect policy having given effect to all the mischief 
the enemy intended when he issued his impotent Berlin and Milan decree, to 
exclude us from communion with the other nations of Europe. 

It becomes your honourable house, that has so gloriously set an example 
and conferred on Europe the emancipation of the human race, to add another 
claim to the gratitude of the world in allowing free scope to the industry and 
ingenuity of mankind. 

In our present state, the labouremo longer employed becomes a dangerous 
burden on the community, his affections are alienated, and he no longer 
reverences our sacred institutions, under which he does not enjoy any of the 
comforts or conveniences of life, hence the peace oT the country is continually 
agitated with a distressed and dangerous population. 



3i8 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

An influx of wealth always follows a free and extended commerce, and 
your honourable house should beware, and take a lesson from the experience 
of ages, which proves that commerce is a sensitive plant that shrinks when 
touched by the hand of power, and has never flourished but under liberal and 
enlightened governments. 

And your petitioners will ever pray, &c." 

The first recorded fatal accident in the town caused by woollen 
machinery took place in 1819, at Rosebank Mill, A young 
man named Gill was engaged in putting a belt on a jenny, 
when he was caught by the apron, and before anything could 
be done to release him, he was so much injured that he died the 
same evening. 

At this date another fire broke out in Wilderhaugh Mill, by 
which it was again totally destroyed. It was occasioned by one 
of the workmen falling asleep about three o'clock in the 
morning and leaving a candle burning, which ignited some wool. 
Before it was discovered the fire had obtained so firm a hold 
that the building was consumed in two hours. 



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CHAPTER VIII. 

IN 1819 the Manufacturers' Corporation presented a silver cup 
to Dr Douglas, which is now in the hands of his grandson, 
R. D. Thomson, Edinburgh. The proceedings on that 
interesting occasion were printed and circulated throughout the 
district, copies of which in the following terms are still extant, — 

''The general and prevailing inclination towards public assemblys has 
not escaped influencing this little town, although the circumstances may seem 
a little peculiar at the present time. 

The commerce of the town of Galashiels is chiefly founded on their coarse 
and narrow cloth, it being the staple commodity, which they manufacture with 
great skill, and which supplies with material advantage the internal demands 
of the adjacent counties. The beautiful situation of the village near the 
junction of the Tweed and Gala is improved by a general air of cleanliness 
and comfort, and rendered picturesque by the numerous small gardens and 
orchards which are interspersed among the houses. 

In the days of general difficulty which followed the last peace Galashiels 
had her share of the common distress, but its worst consequences were averted 
by the well-judged and active exertions of their venerable clergyman, the 
surviving companion of Adam Ferguson, of John Home and other men of 
genius who distinguished the last generation. Possessed of opulence beyond 
the usual lot of his profession in Scotland, he hesitated not to pledge his own 
credit to a great extent to relieve the difficulties arising from the sudden check 
given to former facilities for carrying on business. His assistance was so 
wisely and effectually distributed that, while he did infinite service to the 
manufacturers, he experienced no loss of any consequence, and had the 
satisfaction of having preserved the credit of his worthy and industrigus 
parishioners, by a confidence as judiciously placed, as it was in itself generous 
and well timed. These services were not forgotten, and, at the Clothiers' 
annual meeting this year they resolved to gratify their own feelings and those 
of Dr Douglas by presenting to him a piece of plate with an inscription, which 
should commemorate their gratitude. As their meeting for this purpose was 
unusually important, they requested from their neighbour, Mr Walter Scott, 
Sheriff of the County, permission for his piper (John of Skye) to attend upon 
their conviviality. This request was conveyed in the following poetical epistle, 
written by David Thomson, very well expressed, and was, of course, very 
willingly coniplied with, — 

3»9 



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320 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Although we are nae burgh toon, 
At times we like for to be vogie; 

An' when the Michaelmas comes roun', 
We talc' our dinner and a cogie. 

The yeomen round are a' invited 

(Woo' sellers drawing to woo' buyers), 

An' if we thought we'd no' be slightet. 
We'd welcome a' the neebrin' squires. 

We hae some flags, but no' that kind 
Sedition's sons of late unfurled; 

Our mottoes to the arts inclined, 

Breathe peace and commerce o'er the world. 

If e'er we come to get a vote, 

Our trusty freend and worthy neebour, 

Your merit shan'na be forgot; 
We ken ye are a special pleader. 

A few years back, an' oor bit toun 

Was scarcely kenned for arts and knowledge; 

Noo wheels an' wheels rin endless roun', 
An' Mr Fyshe has got a college. 

Oor lofts are a' weel filled wi* woo'. 
An' simmer's gane, an' winter's comin'; 

A guid sharp frost wad serve us noo. 
An' set oor spindles a' a bummin'. 

Nae vagrants loiter in oor street, 

Nane reads the Scotsman in the toun; 

Cheap woo' enables us to meet 

Oor bills, an' keeps reforming doon. 

Some think we spin oor yarn owre sma', 
But that's a faut that micht be mendit; 

Baith verse an' thread ye may owredraw, 
An' make them langer than intendit. 

Ye hae a piper, John o' Skye, 

We heard him play, an* like his chanterf 

October twelfth send him owre by 

To gie our lassies *' Rob, the Ranter." 

If ye wad grant this sma' request, 
In matters mair ye may refuse us; 

John's horn shall be filled o' the best 
To drink his master and the Muses." 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 321 

The Clothiers held their Michaelmas meeting on Tuesday last, and, on 
the same day, presented a handsome silver cup to their , excellent and 
venerable pastor. All the villagers, clad in their best, marched in procession 
to the manse in order to witness the presentation. After they had taken up 
their position round the garden, so that each might see what was going on, 
the good old man was led out to the landing at the head of the front door 
steps by his two daughters. Upon seeing how severe had been the ravages 
of time upon their pastor, many burst into tears. The Doctor himself could 
not speak nor see; but, when the cup was put into his hands, he lifted up his 
face to the sky, and those who were near him saw great tears coursing down 
his cheeks. Neither could his daughters, who were standing beside him, 
refrain, and there was scarce one among the hundreds of spectators whose 
cheeks were not moistened with tears. When the old man was led into the 
house the band played * Auld Lang Syne,' and the gathering slowly dispersed. 
The cup bore the following inscription, composed by David Thomson, 
manufacturer, — 

* Hail, reverend Doctor! dearer still. 

Now, when thy life is all down hill. 

There was a time, not yet far gone, 

When you stood forth, and stood alone. 

When our frail bark was tempest-tossed. 

And neared the shallow, rocky coast. 

You cheered the crew. A favouring gale. 

Auspicious, filled the swelling sail, 

The vessel stands again to sea. 

And rides the waves triumphantly. 

Now, in the autumn of your days. 

Accept this tribute of our praise 

To cheer thee in thy latter end. 

Our guide, our pastor, and our friend.* 

The Clothiers dined together upon this occasion, and the healths were 
drunk of John Scott of Gala, the lord of the village and the active encourager 
of its prosperity; of their neighbour, James Pringle, Esq. of Torwoodlee; of 
their distinguished Sheriff, who, excelling in whatever he undertakes, is equally 
loved and admired by these kindly people; of their worthy banker, Mr Craig; 
and other favourers of their manufacture and trade were not forgotten. 

On Wednesday, to finish the festivity, the * Braw Lads o* Gala Water,* 
with their colours flying and pipes playing, marched up the north side of 
Tweed, and made their salutation to the Sheriff when they arrived opposite 
the house of Abbotsford with such expressions of mutual kindness as the river, 
then in high flood, permitted them to exchange from the opposite bank. 

It is true all this sounds flat and tame compared with meetings of manu- 
facturers in other districts, solemnized with all the pomp of oratory, and 

V 



3aa HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

watched, rather than guarded, with all the panoply of military preparation, 
yet, a good dinner and a cheerful glass are worth a speech even from Mr 
Hunt, and our old-fashioned prejudices love to hear of gratitude to a bene- 
factor, though he be priest of the parish, and esteemed for his divinity, as 
much as for his patriotism. 

There is something kindly in hearing of the meeting of a body of men 
whose banners bear the peaceful emblems of their own industry instead of 
aspirations after impossibilities, whose convocations require from their 
provincial magistrate only the joyous minstrelsy of his piper, and who have no 
occasion for the attendance of the yeomanry of the county, unless for the 
purpose of purchasing their wool. Long live the braw lads of Gala Water, 
and may their good sense and grateful spirit meet both applause and imitation. 
If any radical should venture among them, he is like to learn the flavour of 
the ' Sour plums of Galashiels.' " 

This procession to Abbotsford is evidently that referred to 
by Scott in a letter to Lord Montague, dated 12th November, 
1 819, in which he states, — 

** I wish I* had any news to send your lordship, but the best is we are all 
quiet here. The Galashiels weavers, both men and masters, have made their 
political creed known unto me, and have sworn themselves anti-radical. 

They came in solemn procession with their banners, with my own piper 
at their head, whom they had borrowed for the nonce. But, the Tweed being 
in flood, we could only communicate like Wallace and Bruce across the 
Carron. However, two deputies came through in the boat, and made me 
acquainted with their loyal purpose. 

The evening was crowned with two most distinguished actions, the 
weavers refusing in the most peremptory manner to accept of a couple of 
guineas to buy whisky, and the renowned John of Skye, piper in ordinary to 
the Laird of Abbotsford, no less steadily refusing a very handsome collection 
which they offered him for his minstrelsy." 

Lockhart, in his life of Scott, throws light upon the state of 
the country at that period, and furnishes the motive for the above 
demonstration. He thus writes, — 

** Toward the close of the year 18 19 there prevailed an alarming spirit of 
insubordination among the mining population of Northumberland and the 
weavers in the West of Scotland, and Mr Walter Scott was particularly 
gratified at finding his own neighbours at Galashiels had escaped the contagion. 
There can be little doubt that exemption was principally owing to the personal 
influence and authority of the Laird of Abbotsford and Sheriff of the Forest. 
But the people of Galashiels were also fortunate in the qualities of their 
landlords, Mr Scott of Gala and Mr Pringle of Torwoodlee." 



'^ ^ - - "■mUnn/ 



1 



CHAPTER IX. 

^ I ^HE kindly feeling existing between the Clothiers of Gala- 
shiels and their neighbour, the Laird of Abbotsford, 
found expression at this time, on the occasion of his 
being raised to the dignity of baronet. On the 12th April, 
1820 1820, the Clothiers and others met, to the number of fifty, to 
celebrate the event in the New Inn in Bank Street, where they 
dined, George Craig being in the chair. When Sir Walter's 
health was drunk the following song, composed by David 
Thomson, was sung in grand style by Andrew Hislop to a 
delighted audience, who were highly gratified that their feelings 
should have been embodied in verse on such an interesting 
occasion, — 

**The Thames, long of Britain the glory and pride, 
Must now yield to Scotland and lovely Tweedside; 
For the harp lies unstrung in fair Twickenham's bowers. 
And the roses of Windsor have shed their last flowers. 

The Muses, distracted with bustle and noise, 
Have fled to fair Scotland's sweet pastoral joys; 
On the banks of the Yarrow their gambols are seen, 
Where Hogg leads the dance in the *Wake of the Queen/ 

But chiQfly, oh Tweed, in thy green grassy vale, 
They love thy sweet breezes of health to inhale; 
Where the abbey of Melrose lifts its honoured head, 
And Abbotsford rises, the grace of the Tweed. 

All hail ! thou sweet minstrel, the pride of our clime, 
Whose song lifts the soul to fair virtue sublime; , 
May the Muses, enraptured, still lighten your hours. 
And on the mild evening of life shed their flowers. 

Oh! great is the power that to genius is given. 
To lighten the earth with the halo of heaven. 
To break through the clouds of detraction that rise. 
And scatter the shades of the deepest disguise. 

323 



324 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Ah ! love you to charm and enlighten our isle, 
To share both the people and soverei«"n's smile; 
We rejoice in the favour that altered your lot 
And raised up plain Walter to Sir Walter Scott. 

While Tweed shall roll on in her sylvan career, 
Thy name shall be honoured, and hallowed thy bier; 
While the peasant shall point to thy turrets so fair, 
And say, the great minstrel, Sir Walter, dwelt there." 

1 82 1 When the annual festival approached in 182 1 the Corporation 

resolved to invite Sir Walter to partake of their hospitality. 
Accordingly, the Muse was again invoked by David Thomson, 
who wrote the following invitation, — 

** Another year has o'er us flown, 
A year disgraced by many a not; 
A blessing on our little town, 

We've never been an hour unquiet. 

Wi' plenty wark and plenty bread, 

The politics they but amuse us; 
Our liberties we dinna dread, 

And ken the knaves that wad confuse us. 

Another year has o'er us flown, 

And ye have risen to high station; 
There's nae preferment that's been shown 

That's gi'en mair pleasure to the nation. 

Lang was the minstrel's art despised, 

And a' that tried the occupation; 
We're by a' sober fouk advised 

That it wad lead them to starvation. 

But when a poet's made a knight, 
Sic jibes can be endured nae langer; 

Aneath your banneret they'll fight, 

To shield them frae sic senseless clamour. 

But, to the point! Last year ye said 

As lang as ye a piper keepit, 
Ye wad him send to oor parade. 
Whene'er his services were needit. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

If John o' Skye has nae objection, 

Ye*ll warn him for the eleventh October; 

We*ll send him back wi* circumspection, 
And boat him either drunk or sober. 

We hae the promise of the Laird, 
Sin' he to gentle Hope was married 

(A lady worthy his regard), 

He like a saint at home has tarried. 

Oh! wad ye come and grace our feast. 
How fond we'd grow and how familiar; 

In absence of our worthy priest. 
You are an excellent auxiliar. 

This letter had been writ in prose, 
But, as you are yourself a rhymer. 

Our Corporation did suppose, 

That you wad better like a chimer. 

But, lest we on your time intrude 
(Which, by the bye, we had forgot), 

At present, we shall just conclude 
With our respects to Lady Scott." 

Sir Walter accepted the invitation, but tradition t 
to relate regarding this interesting meeting. The 
could have spoken from personal recollection are now gc 
the minute book of the Corporation does not even allud 
event. Besides the names of the office-bearers for th 
the only entry is a marginal note stating that 149 c 
.Scott's Inn, and seventy boys and girls. 

In the old days, like the good old English ger 
when the Corporation feasted the great, they did not foi 
poor, and the hearts of those seventy boys and girls, w 
employed as ^^creeshies'' and ^^piecers,'* would be gladd 
that, as on all similar occasions up to a comparatively 
date, by each one receiving a substantial pie. 

It is extremely fortunate that David Thomson • 
follow the example of the Rev. Henry Davidson, the 
parish minister, who, it is said, burned all his manuscrif 



326 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Thomson left a considerable amount of written matter both in 
prose and verse. He was styled "The Galashiels Poet/' and 
is thus referred to by Sir Walter Scott, — *'Hogg came to break- 
fast this morning, having taken and brought for his companion, 
the Galashiels bard, David Thomson, as to a meeting of * Huz 
Tividale Poets."' Though Mr Thomson possessed a facility 
in rhyming, he has left nothing that would justify the epithet of 
poet in any high degree. However, apart from his merits in 
this direction, he has done good service by his practice of 
recording current events in the earlier years of this century, as 
almost by his writings alone it has been found possible, 

** To save from times destroying rage, 
And changeful fortune's withering blast, 
The pictured relics of the past." 

The following compilation is an account of the proceedings 
on that memorable occasion, which is the red letter day in the ^ 
calendar of the Corporation, — 

*'The annual meeting of the Corporation of Galashiels took 
place on the nth inst., and was more numerously attended than 
on any previous occasion. 

In the earlier part of the day the procession of the trades 
interested and occupied public attention. The children employed 
in the carding departments of the different manufactories, taste- 
fully attired, led the van. These were followed by the weavers, 
who sported on this occasion all the luxuries of the loom in elegant 
and tasteful variety. The standard-bearer went in front with 
the Corporation flag, having as design two griffins rampant, 
with the motto * Weave truth with trust.' The officer who 
had charge of the procession marched at the side with drawn 
sword. Two quarter-masters, carrying hajberts, walked one at 
each side of the deacon, who carried the Corporation books tied up 
with blue silk ribbons. Each office-bearer wore over his shoulder 
a broad silk sash edged with blue, and a white linen apron round 
his waist; then came the band, which consisted entirely of 
fiddles. Next followed the Clothiers, while flags with appro- 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 327 

priate devices in allusion to the great staple manufacture were 
seen flying at intermediate distances in most beautiful order. 

John of Skye, the far-famed piper of Sir Walter Scott, in 
the garb of Old Gaul, played the gathering of the clans with a 
spirit and effect which, to those unacquainted with his powers, 
it would be in vain to convey an idea. 

Sir Walter, accompanied by Lady Scott and Miss Scott in 
the carriage, passed through the procession, and were greeted 
with those enthusiastic acclamations which their presence never 
failed to produce. 

At three o*clock the Corporations sat down to most sub- 
stantial dinners in the two principal inns, and were honoured on 
this occasion with the presence of the Lord of the Manor and 
the most distinguished gentlemen in the neighbourhood, includ- 
ing Sir Walter Scott, Bart. 

After dinner, sentiment and song followed in rapid succes- 
sion, and a proud man was Maureate' Thomson when his health 
was proposed by ^ the brother bard of Abbotsford.' Sir Walter 
requested Mr Andrew Hislop to favour him by singing the oldest 
Scotch song he knew. Mr Hislop complied by giving ^ Hey, 
Jenny, come doun to Jock.* During the singing of the song 
Sir Walter beat time with his hands, and at the conclusion 
exclaimed, * Bravo! Mr Hislop, you have given us the very thing 
I wanted, and a crack old Scottish lilt it is.* A number of 
excellent speeches were also delivered, amongst which was one 
by Sir Walter, in which he made allusion to the peaceable state 
of the county of Selkirk. He alleged that his ofiice of Sheriff 
had become quite a sinecure, and jocularly remarked that he 
was afraid, if such a state of things came to the ears of the 
Opposition members, they might make a motion to abolish it 
altogether. He al^ declared that the noblest effort of his genius 
was not so dear to him as the affection and love of his countrymen. 

More songs followed, amongst which were ^The Young 
Lochinvar,* and ^Jock o* Hazeldean.* *The Flowers of the 
Forest' and the song composed by David Thomson, *The 
Thames long of Britain the glory and pride,' were also sung by 



326 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Andrew Hislop. When the latter was finished, Sir Walter told 
Mr Thomson that he should feel under great obligation to Mr 
Hislop for bringing his songs so ably before the public. 

Compliments both in prose and verse flowed so fast on 
the worthy Baronet that he was quite overwhelmed, and declared 
himself bankrupt in gratitude. 

The company were also highly delighted with the acquire- 
ments of Mr Manfrede, an Italian banker from Edinburgh, who 
had the astonishing faculty of composing extempore verses upon 
any given subject. He requested a topic from Sir Walter, who 
gave him " Weel-timed daffin," and on finishing his task it was 
allowed he had done the subject full justice. Mr Manfrede was 
also a chemist, and had made most important discoveries in the 
art of dyeing, for which he had received considerable rewards. 
He was so highly pleased on this occasion by the reception he 
had met that he declared he would accept of no reward, but 
would communicate to the manufacturers the art of dyeing 
gratis. He left a number of valuable recipes, the result of a life 
devoted to science; and the manufacturers were so much gratified 
at his kindness that they hoped at no distant date to be able to 
present him with some proof of their esteem. 

Mr Thomson then delighted the company, and not least 
their illustrious guest, by chanting the following parody on Sir 
Walter's song, * Donald Caird,' in allusion to the publication 
o{ Rob Roy^ — 

' Rob Macgregor's come again, 
Ilka ane thought dead and gane; 
By a wizard cantrip slight, 
Rob again has seen the light. 
He appears in a* his glory, 
Laughing baith at Whig and Tory; 
Rob's a chief o* some regard, 
No' a scamp like Donald Caird. 

Rob Macgregor's come again! 
Rob Macgregor's come again! 
Think ye, does the Shirra ken 
Rob Macgregor's come again? 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 329 

Bars o* iron, bolts o* steel 
Yield to Kob, for Rob's a deil; 
Glasgow jail, it canna baud him, 
No' a beagle daurs to daud him. 
Rob has keys o' ilka prison, 
Turnkey cousins by the dizzen; 
Burgh Bailies and their guard 
Shrink afore the Highland laird. 

Rob Macgregor's come again! 
Rob Macgregor's come again! 
Lawland bodies pay your kain, 
Rob Macgregor's come again. 

Robin's wife's a wife o* mettle, 

Weel she guards auld Scotland's kettle; 

Nought to Helen is a prize 

Like an imp of the excise. 

A' the Highland hills in chorus 

Sing the dirge o' gauger Morris; 

A' the pack might weel be spared, 

Reivers waur than Donald Caird. 

Rob Macgregor's come again! 
Rob Macgregor's come again! 
Lomond's wilds are a' his ain, 
We're fain to see him back again. 

Rob Macgregor dealt in cattle, 
But to pay them was a battle; 
Robin took a shorter plan. 
Cleared the marches like a man. 
Now he's king o' hill and dale, 
A' the Lennox pa)'s blackmail; 
Sojer lads be on your guard, 
Ye arena catching Donald Caird. 

Rob Macgregor's come again! 
Rob Macgregor's come again! 
We'll get back the days that's gane; 
Rob Macgregor's come again. 

Rob Roy's caught at last, 
Bring the wuddie, baud him fast; 
Robin loups, and takes the river. 
Lost for ance, and lost for ever. 



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330 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Joukin* up and joukin* doon, 
Like an otter swam the loon, 
Rob has baffled a' the guard, 
No' sneaked aff like Donald Caird. 

Rob Macgregor's aff again! 
Rob Macgregor's aff again! 
Highland blood and Highland bane, 
Rob Macgregor*s ne'er been tane.' 

During the whole course of the proceedings Sir Walter 
laughed and chorused with the jolliest, giving the old song, 
' Tarry Woo' as his quota to the entertainment of the company. 
His allusion to their popular bard, David Thomson, delighted 
immensely, 

* Their poet, a sad trimmer, but no less 
In company, a very pleasant fellow. 
Had been the favourite of full many a mess 

Of men, and made them speeches when half mellow.' 

Sir Walter did not leave the company till a late hour, and, on 
retiring, said he hoped to meet the Corporation on some future 
opportunity. 

The festivities concluded with a ball, at which nearly all the 
young people in the town were present.'' 

Such is a description of the proceedings on that interesting 
occasion, compiled from various sources, after a lapse of seventy- 
five years. There was a thorough genuineness in the observance 
of the annual festival in those days that may now be looked for 
in vain; the conditions are entirely altered. With the increase 
of population and multiplicity of trades and interests, the town 
has lost much of the old clannishness which rendered the annual 
festival a day of general rejoicing. The village has become a 
town, and the hearty unsophisticated manners of its early 
inhabitants have given way to the less boisterous and less frank 
demeanour of a more polished age. 

Yet to this day those among the manufacturers of Galashiels 
who cherish the memories associated with its early days look 
back with pride to that episode in the history of their Corpor- 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 331 

ation when their fathers entertained as an honoured guest, not 
only a near and respected neighbour who took a warm and 
kindly interest in their welfare, but also one whose genius has 
cast a glamour over their native district, and rendered the place 
of their birth classic ground. 

In connection with the Michaelmas gathering Lockhart 
states that, — 

" It was a pleasant thing to see the annual procession of these weavers 
of Galashiels, as they advanced from their village with John of Skye at their 
head, and the banners of their craft all displayed, to meet Sir Walter and his 
family at Abbotsford, and escort them in splendour to the scene of the great 
festivity. And well pleased was he ' to share the triumph and partake the 
gale' of Deacon Wood or Deacon Walker. At this Galashiels festival the 
Ettrick Shepherd was also a regular attender. He used to come down the 
night before and accompany Sir Walter in the only carriage that graced the 
march, and many of Hogg's best ballads were produced for the first time amid 
the cheers of the men of Galashiels.*' 

It seems a pity to mar the pleasant picture portrayed by 
Lockhart, but, with the exception of this occasion, there 
exists no record that would afford ground for the belief that Sir 
Walter was present at any other Michaelmas dinner. The 
Ettrick Shepherd was no stranger in these gatherings, at which 
it was his regular practice to chant, for he was no singer, many 
of his favourite songs. 

When the time arrived for the observance of the annual 

1822 festival in 1822, it was agreed to invite Sir Walter a second time. 

With this object in view, the services of David Thomson were 

again requisitioned, and the following invitation was sent to 

Abbotsford, — 

" To Sir Walter Scott, Bart, Abbotsford. 

Murray's Inn, Galashiels, Ociober i, 1822. 

This year we rather 'gin to falter 

If an epistle we should send ye; 
Say some, * Ye only plague Sir Walter, 

He canna ilka year attend ye. 



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332 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Last year, nae doot, he condescended, 
Just to be quit o' your palaver; 

But he could ne*er hae apprehended, 
That ilka year ye*d ask the favour. 

He's dined but lately wi' the King, 

And round him there is sic a splendour; 
He winna stoop tae sic a thing, 

For a* the reasons ye can render. 
Content yourselves wi* John o' Skye, 

Your impudence deserves a wiper; 
Ye'll never rest till he'll grow shy, 

And e'en refuse to send his piper.' 

These reasons a' may be withstood 

Wi' nae pretensions for a talker; 
Ye mauna lightly Deacon Wood, 

But dine wi' him like Deacon Walker. 
Your favourite dish is not forgot, 

Imprimis for your bill of fare; 
We'll put a sheep's head in the pOt, 

Ye's get th& cantle for your share. 

And we've the best o' mountain dew, 

Was gathered where ye mauna list, 
In spite o' a' the gauger crew. 

By Scotland's children o' the mist. 
Last year your presence made us canty. 

For which we hae ye yet to thank; 
This year, in faith we canna want ye, 

Ye're absence wad make sic a blank. 

As a' oor neebours are oor friends. 

The company is not selected; 
But for to mak ye some amends. 

There's not a social soul neglected. 
We wish you luck o' your new bigging. 

There's no' the like o't on the Tweed; 
Ye'll no' mistake it by its rigging. 

It is an oddity indeed 

To Lady Scott our kind respects. 
To her and to Miss Ann our thanks; 

We hope this year they'll no' neglect 
Ag^in to smile upon our ranks. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



Upon our other kind regards 

At present we will no* be treating, 

For some discourse we maun hae spared 
To raise the friendly crack at meeting. 

So ye maun come if ye can win, 

Gie's nae excuse like common gentry; 

If we suspect, as sure*s a gun, 

On Abbotsford we'll place a sentry.*' 

What reply was received to this invitation is unkn 
the hospitable board of the Clothiers* Corporation \> 
Mighty Minstrel no more. 



CHAPTER X. 



IN 1822 it is evident that some species of conduct was being 
carried on which caused loss and damage to the members 
of the Corporation. Nothing specific is recorded regarding 
the methods employed by the depredators, but, in order to cope 
with the difficulty, the Corporation drew up the following resolu- 
tion, to which they appended their names, which gives the 
membership at this date, — 

** We, the undersigned, have agreed to form ourselves into an association 
for the purpose of carrying into effect every measure necessary for bringing to 
light all depredators who may be guilty or suspected of injuring or stealing 
property of any description whatever belonging to the said association. And 
for this purpose we agree to be assessed our proportion of the expenses at the 
discretion of a committee of five, including the Deacon, to be annually chosen 
the first lawful day after the Michaelmas meeting, and in case they are not 
chosen at that time, the said committee to continue in full power until their 
successors are appointed. 



John Fairgrieve, Deacon. 

Robert Gill & Sons. 

Hugh Sanderson. 

John Leitch. 

John Young. 

Thos. McGill. 

James Paterson. 

A. Sanderson & Son. 

Jas. & Henry Brown. 



William Dobson. 
Joshua Wood. 
Thos. Clapperton. 
David Ballantyne. 
John Lees. 
William Roberts. 
Jas. Rutherford. 
George Paterson. 
W. & D. Thomson. 



J. & W. Cochrane. 
Robert Walker. 
Richard Lees. 
James Sime & Son. 
George Roberts. 
John Gledhill. 
Robert Paterson. 
James Bathgate." 



The necessity for the above association appears to have been 
of a temporary character, as in a year or two it ceased to exist. 

A question arose at this time which created no small amount 
of feeling amongst the weavers in the town on account of 
the undernoted notice having been issued, — 

** We, the undersigned, bind and oblige ourselves under the penalty of 
twenty-one shillings stg. not to allow any of our workers to dispose of 
thrums, but cause them to be returned with each piece of goods as woven, 
from and after this date." 

334 



George Paterson Walter Cochrane 

James Sime 
Robert Sanderson James Sanderson 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

These thrums were at that time considered by the 
as a perquisite, and were utilised for the manufai i 
rugs, &c. Judging from the signatures appended 
above notice, it does not appear to have found favc 
the Corporation generally, as the names of some of the 
firms in the town at that time were not adhibited. 

A notable feature in connection with the early day< : 

trade was the anxiety displayed by the manufacturers 1 ; 
employees should be competent to thoroughly perfori 

duties in the various departments of the business. With i 
to secure this desirable object, they had repeatedly mac 

and regulations regarding the necessity .of serving a i 

apprenticeship. Those lads who intended to learn the i ; 

all its branches were apprenticed for a term of seven ; 

while others were bound for three years, for the purj ; 

learning the weaving only. The duties and emolum* i 

apprentices are indicated in the following copy of an in( : 

under which a successful manufacturer, recently de : 
learned his trade, — 

** It is contracted, agreed, and by way of indenture finally ended • 
the parties following. To wit, J. S., Clothier in Galashiels, on the one { . 
W. B., son of A. B., of Foulshiels, with the special advice and consei : 
said A. B., his father on the other part, in manner following, that is 
the said W. B. hereby becomes bound apprentice and servant to the s i 
in his trade or employment of a Clothier or manufacturer of woollen cl 
that for all the years and space of seven years from and after the « 
Martinmas eighteen hundred and twenty-one years, which is hereby ( i 
to have been the date of his entry to his said apprenticeship, during 
space the said W. B. binds and obliges himself to obey all his mast( i 
and lawful commands, and leilly, diligently, and truly to attend his i i 
service both by night and by day, nor absent himself therefrom during I 
of his apprenticeship without his master's leave asked and given, un : 
penalty of five shillings stg. for each day he shall be so absent, to be i 
his cautioner after named, to the said J. S. And that he shall not v 
hear or see his master's skaith or hurt in his name, goods, or gear, bi i 
stop, hinder, and impede the same to the utmost of his power, and tir 
acquaint his master therewith. And that he shall not reveal nor divu 
secrets or affairs wherewith he shall be intrusted by his said master, 
that he shall not during the time of his apprenticeship play at cards, c 



336 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

any such ^ame» under the penalty of one pound stg. for each offence, and that 
he shall not frequent ale-houses, nor any houses of that kind, nor keep any idle 
or disorderly company, under the above mentioned penalty for each offence. 
And A. B. hereby becomes bound as cautioner and surety for the said W.B., 
that he shall perform his part of the indenture. 

For which causes and on the other part the said J. S. binds and oblig^es 
himself not only to learn, teach, and instruct the said W. B. in his trade or 
employment of a Clothier or manufacturer of woollen cloth, and conceal no 
part thereof from him, so far as he knows or practices the same himself, but 
use his utmost endeavour to cause him to learn and uptake the same, and, 
further, the said J. S. binds and obliges himself to maintain the said W. B. 
his apprentice in bed, board, and washing during the time of his said 
apprenticeship, and also to provide him with one coat, one vest or waistcoat, 
two pairs of trousers, and a pair of double-soled shoes annually, during the 
time of his apprenticeship. And J. S., junr., Clothier in Galashiels, hereby 
becomes bound as cautioner and surety for the said J. S. his father, that he 
shall perform his part of the indenture. 

And lastly both parties bind and oblige themselves to implement, perform, 
and fulfil their respective parts of the premisses to one another, under the 
penalty of ten pounds stg., to be paid by the party failing to the party observ- 
ing or willing to observe their part of the premisses over and above perform- 
ance. And they consent to the registration hereof in the books of Council 
and Session or other judges* books competent, that letters of horning in six 
days charge and all other execution necessary pass hereon as effeirs, and 
thereto constitute their procurators, &c." 

Apprentices in those days sat at their employer's table, ate 
the same food, and engaged every day in the same round of hard 
labour, sharing together the few holidays that then existed. 
This state of things, in these modern days, would be con- 
sidered intolerable slavery, yet under such conditions were the 
men trained whose energy and perseverance overcame difficulties 
of which the present generation has no conception; to whose 
industry, prudence, and integrity Galashiels is not only largely 
indebted for its growth and prosperity, but for its very existence 
as a manufacturing town. 

1825 Previous to 1825 the Clothiers' and Dyers' Corporations 

were accustomed to celebrate the Michaelmas festival under the 
same roof and in one company. This year, however, the old 
order changed, and it is recorded that the journeymen dined by 
themselves in Murray's Inn, 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 337 

No reason is given for the split, and though in some 
respects this separation may have been a matter for regret, yet 
sooner or later it was certain to take place; but it is satisfactory 
to know that it did not arise upon any question of caste or class 
feeling. It is said that the reason for the disruption arose on 
the question of purveying for the annnal dinner. The Clothiers, 
or ^*Auld Dyers" as they used to be termed, had by prescription 
obtained the privilege of settling this matter, and the members 
of the Dyers' Corporation, or *^ Young Dyers,'' desired to obtain 
a voice in the selecting and testing — or perhaps more correctly, 
tasting^the liquors to be furnished. This innovation was 
resisted, with the result that the secession took place, which, 
however, did not result in any bad feeling, as up to the 
present day the exchange of courtesies between the respective 
Corporations is one of the events of the Michaelmas celebration. 

In modern days the after-dinner oratory at the annual 
festival is to a considerable extent imported, but in the earlier 
years of the century the Clothiers depended almost entirely upon 
local talent. The following is a specimen of what was wont to 
be heard in the old days, and, whatever may be its defects, it has 
at least the merit of originality, a quality sadly lacking in more 
pretentious times, — 

** Mr Chairman and gentlemen, — I have got put into my hands a toast, 
which I wish had been given to one more able to do it justice, but being the 
oldest manufacturer I could not refuse. 

Mr Chairman, we are met here this day for social purposes, farmers and 
manufacturers, and being the first time many of us have dined with our Laird 
we think it a very high honour conferred. In the midst of our conviviality let 
us consider ourselves as brothers, and if we work together we will be 
bad to beat. 

Allow me, Mr Chairman and gentlemen, to relate a parable. — ^There was 
a Galalean shawl manufacturer who went to Jerusalem for orders, and as he 
was' going over Mount Moriah he met the King and two of his favourite 
Queens, and the King addressed him thus: * Who art thou, what is thy name, 
and whither art thou going ? ' He replied, * Your Majesty, after you is good 
manners.' The King then said, * I am Solomon, King of Jerusalem, and these 
are two of my favourite Queens, the one is called the Rose of Sharon, the 
daughter of a farmer, the other is called the Lily of the Valley, the daughter 
of a manufacturer, and they cannot live separate else they would both die.' 

V 



33» 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



* Well/ returned the stranger, ' I am Pudlemighty, a shawl manufacturer 
from Galalee, and I have got with me two shawls, the one is called the Rose 
of Sharon, the other the Lily of the Valley, if you will do me the favour to 
accept of them I will feel highly honoured.' * Well,' said the King, * I will 
take them, and in return I will give unto thee this ring. When thou goest 
into the city show it to Mordicea, the merchant, tell him what thou hast done, 
and he will give thee an order.' So Mr Pudlemighty made his obeisance, 
bowing himself to the ground, and he went on his way rejoicing. And when 
he was come unto the city he called upon Mordicea even as the King had 
commanded, and showed him the ring, and told him of all that he had done. 
And when Mordicea saw the ring and heard all that was said he exclaimed, 
*What! art thou the maker of these beautiful shawls I saw upon the King's 
favourites to-day in the temple?* *Yea,' replied Mr Pudlemighty. * Well,' 
said Mordicea, ' I will give you an order for ten thousand of them. ' So the 
shawl manufacturer thanked him, and went on his way rejoicing. 

Gentlemen, you may all see what I mean, to live on the principle of 
reciprocity, for giff gaff makes good friends. So, I conclude by giving you 

* The town and trade of Galashiels.*'* 



The following list comprises the different firms in the town 
engaged in the woollen trade in 1825, — 

James & Henry Brown. 
John & Walter Cochrane. 
Robert Gill & Son. 
Richard Lees. 
George Paterson. 
James Roberts. 
Alex. Sanderson & Son. 
Wm. & David Thomson. 



"James Bathgate. 
Thos. Clapperton. 
John Fairgrieve. 
John Lees. 
Thomas Mercer. 
George Roberts. 
James Rutherford. 
James Sime & Son. 



William Berry (yarn). George Roberts (yarn). 
Joshua Wood (yarn). 



William Brown. 
William Dobson. 
John Gledhill. 
Thomas McGill. 
Robert Paterson. 
William Robertson. 
Hugh Sanderson & Son. 
Robert Walker. 
James Sanderson (yarn)." 



In addition to the Scottish competition in woollen cloth held 
annually in Edinburgh at the instance of the Board of Trustees, 
1826 there was also a competition in 1826 amongst the local manu- 
facturers for a gold medal. There remains no record of its 
origin or demise, the only notice regarding it is contained 



:^ 4.u^ ^^1, 



.^r. ^C 4.U^ I^^J^^ 



Tijf^jj :^ 4.U. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 339 

1827 same publication in 1827, that in the first competition Robert 
Gill & Son were the successful competitors, and at the second 
J. & H. Brown carried off the honour. The only other reference 

1828 to be found regarding this friendly rivalry occurred in 1828, 
when the gold medal was awarded to J. & W. Cochrane. 

The demand for the old-fashioned ^^blue claith" had now 
begun to die away, and troublous times were in store for 
the Galashiels manufacturers. Stock accumulated, and, in spite 
of every effort to effect a clearance, it still burdened the shelves 
of the various warerooms. Capital was scarce, therefore every 
opportunity was seized in order to find a market. One 
firm in the town found themselves overstocked with goods 
along with a corresponding reduction of capital, and learning 
that an annual fair of some importance was about to be 
held in the Orkney Islands, it was resolved that advantage 
should be taken of the event, in order to reduce the stock. 
Accordingly, young Willie Thomson prepared to set forth 
on the important journey. Great was the concern in that 
household on the momentous occasion, and friendly neighbours 
were not awanting, who gave visible signs of their kindly 
interest. The goods were packed, and at the appointed time 
were transferred to the care of Young, the carrier, and the 
expedition started. Arriving at Leith, the **claith*' was 
embarked on board the *^ George Canning.'* Kirkwall was 
reached, and the goods were disembarked and deposited in a 
place of security. The Fair, which lasted ten days, began, but 
the goods moved tardily off, and the prospect of a clearance grew 
less every day. In those disheartening circumstances, Willie 
resolved to go further afield and see what could be done at Ler- 
wick, some no miles distant. The goods were re-packed, and 
transferred to a cod fishing boat, where they were securely 
covered with old sails. There were three of a crew; the cooking 
appliance consisted of a solitary kettle, the viands being limited 
to oatmeal and treacle, while a fire was made on an arrange- 
ment of stones. The boat had not proceeded far when a gale 
arose, and they had to run to the nearest port for shelter. Here 



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340 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

they remained wind-bound for fourteen days, and employed 
their time in fishing for sillocks, which were cooked and 
eaten with relish, along with oatmeal cakes, baked on the 
hot stones. At length the wind proved favourable, and Lerwick 
was reached. Trade was found to be but little better there, but 
a firm in the town made an offer for all the goods. A vessel was on 
the point of sailing for Leith, and another opportunity of 
leaving Lerwick might not occur for some time. Compulsion 
quickened a bargain, which was made at 3s per yard, 5 per cent, 
off, and a bill at six months. ** Run fast,'' said the merchant, 
**You have no time to lose.'' For the next fourteen weary 
days the sloop fought its way southward. At length Leith was 
reached, and, speedily making his way to the Harrow Inn in the 
Candlemaker Row, Willie rested and refreshed himself. Without 
loss of time, he was soon footing it nimbly over Middleton Moor, 
and in due course reached home. He had hardly entered 
the door when his salutation was, *'What about the claith?" 
*'Sold," was the laconic reply. ** Where's the cash?" was the 
next query. ^4t's a bill," was the rejoinder. The piece of paper 
was suspiciously scrutinized and soon discounted, and was 
in due course honoured. What a talk went through the 
town when the result became known; the **claith" had brought 
3s, but in the interval those in the town had been glad to obtain 
IS 8d per yard for it. 

Trade was bad, an old system was departing, the standard 
cloth and pattern, sterling though they were, were fated to give 
place to a fabric more in accordance with modern ideas. The 
period of transition proved a trying one to the Clothiers of Gala- 
shiels. A paragraph in the Scotsman of this date states, — 

**We are sorry to learn that Galashiels, the great seat of our infant 
woollen manufacture, is in a most disastrous condition. The failures within 
the last few weeks have exceeded anything ever known in the place, and among 
the sufferers are several respectable houses which stood all the trials of 1826 
and many preceding periods of depression. 

The extensiveness of the mischief, we understand, is partly owing to the 
facility with which discounts were obtained, and to the system of accommod- 
ation which had grown up in consequence.'* 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 341 

This gloomy picture of the state of the manufacturers in the 
town appears to have been overdrawn, as in a subsequent issue 
of the same paper a paragraph is inserted stating that 

**A letter from a gentleman in Galashiels mentions that the state of 
business and credit is not so low as formerly stated, there had been a number 
of failures, but there is no leading house in the number, and with the exception 
of four second-rate firms, most of the insolvent individuals did business to a 
very limited extent. '* 

" The further history of the local woollen trade bears out the 

old adage that it is darkest just before the dawn. The greys, 
blues, and drabs ruled the fashion for years, but they lost their 
popularity, and serious suflFering both to Galashiels manufacturers 
and their employees was the result. The first departure from the 
conventional fabrics and colourings is attributed to various 
persons. Sir Walter Scott at this time wore a pair of trousers 
made out of a Scotch checked plaid, and his example was largely 
followed, A new direction was given to the trade, but its 
fullest development may be said to owe its origin to the simple 
idea of twisting together two or more yarns of a diflFerent colour. 
The manner of producing the various coloured checks in the 
early days of what may be styled fancy goods was to weave them 
in black and white, then, in order to produce black and green, 
black and blue, or black and brown, they were put into the dye 
vat till the white check came out the desired colour. 

Soft tartans were first made in the district at this time by 
Thomas Roberts, and trouserings made from twist and mixed 
colourings were also successfully produced. The tartans were 
extensively used by the nobility and gentry for cloaks, dresses, 
and shawls. Three-fourths of the looms, which now numbered 
I75> were kept going for half the year on that class of 
goods alone. There were also fifteen sets of carding machines, 
but these represented a much greater number of manufacturers, 
and the fortunate possessor of a quarter of a set was accounted 
a ^'maister*' and a man of means. The number of manu- 
facturers had risen to thirty-four, whose total annual turn-over 
was estimated at ;^26,ooo. 



342 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The now familiar term ** tweeds" originated at this time, 
and js said to have arisen from the word '*tweels" having 
been indistinctly written, and by mistake read as ** tweeds'' by 
James Locke of London, who adopted what he considered an 
appropriate name for the fabrics produced in the locality, and 
which, owing to the writings of Sir Walter Scott, was calculated 
to extend the popularity of the article. 



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CHAPTER XI. 

THE origin of the tweed trade forms an interesting chapter 
in the history of the Manufacturers' Corporation, and it 
is fortunate that Archibald Craig of Edinburgh, and 
James Locke of London, the two gentlemen who were so 
intimately connected with its rise and progress, have left their 
experiences on record. The following are Mr Craig's reminis- 
cences of the tweed trade between the years 1829 and 1836, — 

'' It was in the autumn of 1829 that I returned to Edinburgh by way of 
Liverpool from London, and upon landing at Glasgow a rather conspicuous 
object attracted my attention among the crowd on the Broomielaw, namely, a 
man dressed in a pair of black and white large-checked trousers. In the 
present day such an article of dress would not have been noticed, but when I 
explain that at that period nothing was worn for trousers except plain colours 
such as drabs, greys, and blacks, the effect of such a marked change of dress 
will be better understood. 

I think it highly probable that this man's trousers were made from either 
his grandfather's plaid, or his grandmother's shawl, as the white was so well 
* smoked,' not with sulphur, however, but with an age of peat reek, which by 
no means improved the appearance. I had not been many weeks in Edinburgh, 
however, before another pair or two of a smaller and more modest size of 
check were to be seen, and these I ascertained were made out of travelling 
cloaks. About four or five years previous to 1829 shepherd check cloaks, not 
unlike the Inverness capes of the present day, were much worn by gentlemen 
for wraps, and it was out of these cloaks that the trousers were made. 

Shortly afterwards I had an inquiry from London for *a coarse woollen 
black and white checked stuff made in Scotland, and expected to be wanted 
for trousers,' and requesting some patterns to be forwarded. This was easier 
asked than performed, as at that time these goods were only made in plaids, 
with borders and fringes. However, cutting a small piece from the seam of 
a cloak, it was forwarded, the pattern in those days costing 2S 3d for postage. 
It turned out to be the article required, and an order for half-a-dozen pieces 
was received. These were soon made, and were, I believe, the first Scotch 
tweeds that were sent to London in bulk. They were introduced into in- 
fluential quarters, and increased orders followed rapidly, and the firm with 
which I am connected had about a monopoly of the trade in London in these 
goods for a considerable time. 

343 



344 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

It was not, however, any of the large present centres of the tweed trade 
that had the honour of making them, but the quiet town of Peebles, the late 
Mr Dickson of the Waulk Mill, there, being the first who manufactured the 
goods. He employed all the weavers in and around Peebles, but the demand 
became so strong that 1 had to get them made at Bannock burn and other 
places; and it was not till the autumn of 1830 that I placed the first order for 
them with four of the chief manufacturers in Galashiels, and I ascertained that 
none had been made there previous to that date. 

In 1831-32, although a large demand had sprung up both in Edinburg-h 
and London for this new material, no one expected it would prove permanent. 
It was expected that after it had a *run* for a time it would go out of use, but 
a trifling but lucky circumstance took place, which had a most important 
bearing upon the trade. It happened that one of the manufacturers had made 
a quantity of these checks, but the white was so impure and dirty-looking from 
being mixed with grey wool that they would not sell. In these circumstances 
a happy idea struck^ome one, that if they were dipped in brown dye it would 
hide the fault and produce a brown and black check. This idea was acted 
upon, and on the *new style* being sent to London they sold rapidly, and fresh 
orders were sent for more of the same pattern. These brown and black checks 
were succeeded by blue and black, then green and black, and these again by 
broken and large checks in all the above colourings, and at every change of 
pattern a fresh impetus was given to the trade. After these checks had run 
their day they were succeeded by the same colourings in tweels, black and 
white, black and brown, &c., a good variety of new patterns and colourings 
following each other. 

In 1833-34, several of the smaller towns were now successfully competing 
in the race with Galashiels; nor was it till the introduction of fine foreign 
wools took place when that town fairly shot ahead and took the lead. 

It was in 1834 that my friend, the late Mr Dickson, removed from Peebles 
to Stow, and introduced new machinery into the old mill there, where he began 
manufacturing foreign wool with great success. He introduced it in granite 
and heather mixtures in an endless variety of bright colourings, and when I 
showed the first ranges of these mixtures in London, the chief men in the 
wholesale woollen trade were quite astonished, and I had some difficulty in 
assuring them that the entire range, several yards long, and embracing some 
dozens of patterns and colourings, was woven in the loom. Their idea was 
that the pieces were woven separately and stitched together at the yellow thread 
which divided them. I had no difficulty in obtaining orders for these goods, 
in fact, the first order I received took the Stow Mill many months to execute. 

By 1834-35, the firm with which I was connected were doing a large trade 
with the first wholesale houses in London, and, were it not that we had opened 
a branch in Glasgow in 1835, we would then have opened a branch in London 
for the sale of tweeds. I went to Glasgow, and was surprised to find tweeds 
were but little known there, for, with the exception of one old firm, none of 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 345 

the drapery houses kept them, and they were nearly unknown to the general 
public. I advertised the goods, pointing out their superiority to cloth of 
English make, and asked all who wished well to the development of our 
native manufactures to patronise this new branch of their home industry. 
This had the effect, and a large demand at once sprang up, and the foreign 
merchants not only began to ship them all over the world, but the large ware- 
houses were compelled to keep stocks of them in self-defence. 

The trade is now wonderfully increased, and the goods are made from 
Shetland, Harris, and Skye in the north; to Galashiels, Hawick, and 
Langholm in the south. This had been accomplished against the old 
established wealthy manufacturers of England, who before 1829 may be said 
to have had an entire monopoly of the woollen trade of the country. It was 
begun by a set of men who appeared most unlikely to have made such a 
conquest. These men's sons, however, entered into competition with their 
English rivals, and now in 1874 they have beaten them entirely both in fabric 
and design. 

With ordinary prudence and good management on the part of the manu- 
facturers, by designers having a sharp eye to the wants and tastes of the 
public, by continuing to keep up the purity of the material and the standard 
of excellence, nothing should shake or undermine the great trade it has 
grown into, or hinder its constant increase from year to year." 

After the above was published, a considerable number of 
communications reached Mr Craig regarding the share others 
had in bringing tweeds into notice, and in consequence that 
gentleman supplemented his former paper by the following, — 

** As I have no wish to magnify my own share in the work by with- 
holding honour where honour is due, I willingly add to these reminis- 
cences by mention of a few men who also at first contributed to the establish- 
ment of this great industry. I must begin with my old friend, the late Mr 
James Locke of Regent Street, London. Although he was not the first to 
introduce Scotch tweeds into the Metropolis (for I claim that honour), he 
perhaps did more work, both in getting his own designs made and the goods 
introduced into influential quarters than any other man of that time. I well 
remember calling upon Mr Locke in the autumn of 1829 to bid him farewell 
on leaving London. He was then doing a small cloth trade in York Street, 
Covent Garden. Shortly afterwards he removed to Regent Street, and in 
1830 or *3i, finding that Scotch shepherd checks were taking hold of the taste 
among the upper classes^ he directed his attention to these goods, buying and 
selling them freely. It was soon after this he began to design his own 
patterns; in the early days of the trade there were no pattern ranges as they 
are now. Every new design was made in pieces forty yards long, and it was 
hit or miss whether the goods came up saleable or not. 



346 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

I find that, like myself, Mr Locke took his ideas for design and colourings 
from all manner of things. The most successful colourings for mixtures I 
ever hit upon, I collected from the bed of the river Garry in the pass of 
Killiecrankie, mostly granites, porphyries, and jaspers, which I found to be 
particularly rich in colourings such as reds, greys, and greens, beautifully 
mottled and mixed with other finely contrasted colours. 

The Messrs Lockes' new shop being in one of the best thoroughfares in 
London, it was not long till the nobility and West End people found them 
out. Her Majesty sent for them the first time she went to Scotland, and gave 
a large order for Royal Stewart and other tartan dresses and shawls. Prince 
Albert also selected various tweeds for suits. After tweeds got introduced 
into such influential quarters, the middle classes were not long in following. 
The trade rapidly extended, the Messrs Locke found it necessary to keep a 
large stock of Scotch woollen goods, which enabled them to go into the 
wholesale branch, and to supply the leading tailors and clothiers in both 
London and the provinces. 

Another Scotsman who was an early pioneer was Mr A. Binnie, of 
Binnie & Richardson, in Old Bond Street. He was the first to introduce 
borders on tweeds for stripes down the sides of trousers, an innovation that 
came about in the following manner. Trousers were very tight in 1833, and 
upon the fashion changing, Mr Binnie, unwilling to throw away a pair^of 
shepherd checks on account of their shape, devised a plan for letting in a 
stripe of black cloth about two inches wide down the outside of the leg, and 
upon being seen, the fashion became general. Since the borders have been in 
fashion they have at various times varied from one quarter of an inch to three 
inches in width. 

At an early period in the history of the trade Sir Walter Scott and Lord 
Brougham were marked patronisers of the shepherd checks. It is told of 
Lord Brougham, that being in Inverness and going into a noted shop there, 
he got a pair of shepherd check trousers, which he liked so much that he 
ordered two more pieces. * Of course, he meant sufficient to make two pairs of 
trousers, but the merchant, knowing that he had a safe customer, sent him 
two whole pieces, each about forty yards long; and, although remonstrated 
with, declined to take them back on the ground that he had got them specially 
made. His Lordship was obliged to keep and pay for the lot, and when cari- 
catured in Punch he was always represented in these veritable shepherd checks. 

Before concluding, I must not forget to do justice to two Edinburgh 
men for the part they took as pioneers, — I mean Messrs James and Archibald 
Ogilvie. They took a lead in designing patterns, in fact they were the first 
designers of their day. Their patterns became well known, and were much 
sought after by the leading London houses, and they gave Edinburgh a name 
for superior style which it still maintains; for though the Edinburgh trade will 
not compare with London or Glasgow, it is well known for good taste, in 
patterns it is second to none in the kingdom. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 347 

The field for Scotch tweeds still continues to widen year after year. 
Large additions have been made to all the old mills, new ones are constantly 
being built, and yet, with all this vast increase in production, the demand is 
barely supplied. 

The great secrets of the unparalleled success are these — Purity of the 
material, durability combined with cheapness, great comfort in wear, and 
priority in new patterns. I have seen the beginning, rise and progress of this 
wonderful trade, and though I cannot expect to be much longer connected 
with it, I have had great pleasure in jotting down these reminiscences of its 
early days. 

Edinburgh, 1875. (Signed) Archibald Craig." 

Such are Mr Craig ^s reminiscences of the tweed trade, but 
no less interesting is the following chapter written by James 
Locke, which he styles ** A few Facts on the Tweed Trade," — 

1830 " We visited Galashiels about 1830, or '32 and ordered goods (the first in 

any quantity that were sent to London). It would be curious to contrast the 
amount of our first transactions with their amount at the present time (1863). 
The goods then bought were only tweels in all colours. They consisted of 
thin granite colours, but these were only in black and white and brown and 
white running into lighter and darker mixtures. It was soon found that 
thicker goods were wanted for winter wear. In the early years of the trade 
in Scotland this was difficult to get, as few had milling machinery heavy 
enough to mill thick goods. 

We have said that we went to Galashiels in 1830 and became acquainted 
with a firm there. We suggested that they should get up and weave a few 
patterns that their effect might be seen before ordering. We shall never 
forget the look we got, and the difficulties we had to overcome before our 
suggestion was agreed to. We were the first house that had a * range* of 
patterns made entirely for ourselves. Now, without this adjunct the trade 
could not have gone on. At first these were charged for, but it was soon dis- 
continued. In 1836 we first put up the large checks 8 by 7, which opened the 
eyes of many to new fancies. In 1843-44 we ordered all our goods to be made 
with a border, and in so doing we took the whole trade by surprise, some of 
our neighbours sending their old stock to Crayford to have a border printed 
upon them. This was the origin of borders on Scotch-made tweeds, and the 
impulse it gave to the trade at the time was wonderful. 

When gentlemen of the rod and gun began to inquire for that which 
would resemble the shooting ground, we had nothing of the kind, neither was 
there any in the market. We wrote to a Galashiels house for a *range,' but 
they replied they had never heard of such an article. By the following post 
we requested them just to imitate Buckholm Hill which overshadowed them, 
at this time in beautiful bloom. A boy was despatched to bring some heather. 



348 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Now, when a handful of this was squashed together it had different shades 
varying with the seasons. This proved to be the very thing we wanted, and 
led to the introduction of a variety of colourings before unknown. This was 
the origin of heather mixtures. 

Originally, granite colours were made only in black and white and brown 
and white, but, on one occasion, walking out near the head of Lochshiel we 
observed the parapet of a bridge made of rough granite stones. These we 
chipped for patterns, and got nearly all the colours imitated in fine wool. We 
now for the first time introduced a yellow colour, never seen before in town, 
though, we remember having seen it worn by Highland drovers fifty years ago. 
This colour, so hateful in general, has become, when tastefully contrasted with 
others, a very favourite one, and we maintain that * Scotchified ' patterns did 
not originate with the makers of Scotch tweeds. It was the Highland glens 
that gave many of them to the trade. Gentlemen brought the colours up from 
their shooting boxes, as they could not be produced there in any quantity. 
We well remember to have seen a good stuff and colour at Glenfinnon, but 
when we spoke of ordering a hundred yards for sporting purposes, we were 
informed it was only made in the winter evenings, and could not procure more 
than three or four six yard lengths. So much for homespun, and had we 
waited for such a scanty supply, most of our shooting connection would have 
gone to the moors habited something like Adam and Eve in the garden of 
Eden. It was long, however, before gentlemen wore these light colours in 
the streets. We said twenty years ago that the time would come when nearly 
every person we saw on our streets would be wearing this comfortable texture. 
When we ourselves first appeared in a very light suit we were accosted as 
something strange. * We have seen the green man,' said a friend to us, *but 
I never until now saw a light Scotch grey man in public,' yet step by step it 
has become the wear for gentlemen. Fashion is a very undefined and complex 
thing — always led off at a very high level, and gradually descends, and without 
the higher English gentlemen had in a very marked degree taken to the wear- 
ing of this stuff, we never should have had such a demand. 

Simultaneously with the tweeds there arose quite a fashion for soft fine 
wool six-quarter wide plaiding, or fine Cashmere tartan, as it was called, and 
its introduction was effected in the following simple manner. A lady had 
suggested to an Edinburgh house that she would like to have a dress of what 
is called the * shepherd's plaid,' or black and white check. They fortunately 
took the hint and gave the idea to a firm in Galashiels, who first produced it in 
dresses only, and for some time in short lengths. As this took both extra 
time and labour, and was the product of German lambs^ wool at 4s per pound, 
they came at first to a long price. Consequently for a long time these goods 
were confined to the wealthy classes. About 1832 this branch of the trade 
was introduced into London, and in a short time the demand far exceeded the 
supply. The manufacturers who at first had made short lengths of the above 
check, now found at the West End a house, hitherto unknown to them, who 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 349 

could give orders for 80 or loo pieces of 40 yards each, which took six months 
to supply. But this beautiful branch of the trade came to its climax in 1848; 
Lancashire and Yorkshire sent imitations, and in a short time dresses which 
cost pounds for the genuine article were soon in the market for as many 
shillings. 

We had been long familiar with the shepherd's maud, and, we believe, 
were the first to wear one in town. Well do we remember, about 1833, going 
down High Holborn on a Sunday morning with a whole host of admiring 
followers behind us. What lots of these were made in the next ten years for 
travelling purposes. The maud was an article that added much to the Scotch 
trade, and they were soon produced in all the clan tartans. We remember to 
have sold one for a bedcover for the present Pope, and Lady Franklin gave 
one to all the officers of the ships going to seek for the North- West Passage. 

Ladies' shawls were a very extensive branch for about ten years. Every 
manufacturer in Galashiels made these goods for the Glasgow and London 
markets. At first they were made of Cheviot wool, but soon the cry got up for 
finer qualities. For many years these shawls were only made in six-quarter 
to eight-quarter in all the clan patterns, and also in fancies of every kind, made 
out of the finest fleeces. 

We well remember making a pattern which became a great favourite, it 
was called the * Blair Athole.* In 1842, when the Queen first went to Scotland, 
we proposed to ourselves a new shawl. We took the large 'Murray' and in- 
corporated it with the 'Victoria.' Could it have been patented, it would have 
been a fortune. From this came nearly all what have been termed the * Dress 
Clan' patterns in shawls. 

Having in our younger days observed the Newhaven fish wives petticoats, 
w^ thought of introducing them. About 1844 we started for the prosecution 
of the idea, but on making inquiry at the different houses in Edinburgh could 
only obtain a few pieces of three and a half yards. 

We went up to the fish market and soon saw the article wanted. On 
getting up to the woman, with apparently as many petticoats as the grave- 
dig"gr®r in Hamlet had waistcoats, we asked her to open for us some of her 
oysters. While she was thus engaged we were taking stock of her stripes. 
While doing this the following interlocutor took place, * Just eat your oysters, 
ma bonnie lamb, an' dinna fyke sae muckle aboot ma coats.' 

Reviewing the Scotch tweed trade at a glance, which was soon after it 
started accompanied by the Scotch shawl trade, in 1832 the whole did not 
amount to more than ;^2000 or ;^3000. In 1862 we find it is, if not more, 
;^ 1, 200, 000. No doubt the trade here at former times was considerable, but it 
was from a different kind of cloth, namely, three-quarter wide greys and blues, 
supplied to the Edinburgh and Glasgow markets. This trade is now superseded 
by the more modern one of tweeds, shawls, and cloakings, at present principally 
the first of these. We have said that originally nearly all the fine summer 
goods were made from fine German lambs' wool. The Australasian wool soon 



350 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

superseded these, and came in at a lower price. These are now wholly in use 
except in a few instances. This town is fast becoming the Leeds of Scotland. 
In 1830 its sets of machinery were only six or eight, in i860 these were about 
fifty and still increasing. As time runs on this trade will more and more 
develop itself. The woollen trade of Scotland thirty years ago was a very 
small one. We ourselves found it at a few thousand pounds, we now find it 
millions. 

Sir Walter Scott and other professional writers may have done much for 
inducing strangers to visit Scotland, and in doing so doubtless did much good. 
But the men, the practical traders, who have been the means of introducing 
and extending the tweed trade have done a more lasting benefit, which, we 
have no doubt, will be appreciated by generations yet to come." 



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CHAPTER XIL 



AT the present day the art of making tweeds is so well 
known, and the machinery employed is so perfect, that 
there are few of the difficulties to overcome which the 
manufacturers of an earlier day had to face. Had not improved 
methods of producing yarn been adopted, in all probability the 
tweed trade would not have grown into the industry that it now is. 
Th^ smoothness of the yarn depends upon efficient carding, and 
the finer the work the process becomes the more difficult. Up to 
this time the carding machine was supplied with scribbled wool, 
and the chief difficulty was to secure regularity in the feeding. 
If the wool went irregularly into the machine, the **rowin's" were 
delivered in a similarly unequal state, which seriously affected 
the regularity of the yarn. This was a continual vexation, 
so the feeding machine was introduced, — an adaptation of cotton 
machinery to woollen goods, which operated by taking the sliver 
from the scribbler and applying it to the feeding board of the 
carder in such a manner as obviated the evil effects of irregular 
feeding in the first instance. 

The inquiry which took place previous to the passing of the 
first Factory Act revealed the fact that great hardships were 
endured by the children employed in the woollen factories, the 
hardest lot of all being that of the ** piecer,'* whose duty was to 
join the " rowings'' on the creeping cloth of the slubbing billy. 
The carder turned out the prepared wool in rolls, the length of 
which was equal to the width of the machine. Lifting a hand- 
ful of these, the **piecer'' stood behind the ^'billy'' and, as each 
was drawn in, a fresh length was joined to the end. This work 
required constant attention, and was continued for twelve hours 
per day, and in busy seasons sometimes longer. For work of this 
nature the boys had received is 8d per week, an annual gift of a 
suit of Galashiels greys, and a Kilmarnock bonnet. This kind 

351 



352 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

of labour at length came to an end, the billy was thrown out on 
the introduction of the condenser, to which the following little 
history is attached. 

In 1830 Mr Thomas Roberts of Galashiels emigrated to 
America, and there saw the condenser at work. Considering it 
would greatly assist the trade of his native town, he set himself 
to study the machine, and having mastered its details he sent 
drawings and models to his brother, George Roberts. A 
machine was erected by William Kemp in Huddersfield Mill, 
Galashiels, but on trial was found to be a failure. 

Mr Wilson of Earlston and Mr Houldsworth of Glasgow 
took up the idea, and obtained a patent for what they considered 
a perfect machine. Several were sold to Galashiels manu- 
facturers, but still it was found to produce unequal yarn, and Mr 
Roberts was censured for being the primary cause of much 
money being thrown away in defective machinery. 

Some years afterwards Mr Roberts returned home, and 
discovered that an essential part of the machine had been 
neglected, viz., the feeding apparatus which took the wool from 
the cards in the form of a sliver. This portion of the machine, 
after lying for years in a garret, was sought out, and under Mr 
Roberts* personal supervision it was erected at Selkirk in a small 
place that formed the nucleus of the Forest Mill. The result 
proved a complete success, and all the condensers in Galashiels 
were fitted with the sliver-feeding apparatus as speedily as 
possible. 

Another simple improvement was introduced by 'Mr Roberts. 
This consisted of an emery roller for grinding and sharpening 
the cards. He constructed the first one with his own hands, and 
the effect was surprising. The hitherto insuperable difficulty of 
getting the workers and doffers close enough to the cylinder was 
entirely removed. 

1833 In 1833 the new statistical account was published, in which 

the Rev. Nathaniel Paterson, the parish minister, thus refers to 
the state of the woollen trade at that time, — 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



353 



" There can be no want of success from inability to spin a fine thread, as I 
have seen a specimen of yarn so delicately drawn that the eye would doubt 
whether the substance were still in a state of carded wool, the lineal measure 
of one pound of wool being more than thirty-seven mites in length (144 cut.) 

Attempts have not been wanting to produce broad-cloths of the finest 
quality, but these have hitherto been but scantily supplied. At this date 
there are 132 looms, but considering their width as compared with those 
formerly in use, they are equal to 187 of the old construction. There are 
also on the average sixteen slubbers and eighty children engaged by the year 
working eleven hours per day, and receiving annually ;^i387, 4s; twenty to 
thirty-six spinners paid by the piece receiving ^^logs, 8s; one hundred weavers 
on piece work receive ;^26og; sixty dyers and dressers working ten hours 
per day whose wages amount to ;^i56o; and forty-six women sorting 
wool and yarn, ;^52o; or a total amount of wages paid annually, ;^7i59,i2s. 

The annual consumption of wool amounts to 21,500 stones of 24 lbs., of 
which 21,000 is home grown, and 500 chiefly from Van Diemen's Land. 
Nearly half of the raw material is made into knitting yarns, flannels, shawls, 
and plaids; the other half being used for narrow-cloths at from is 8d to 6s 
6d per yard, together with crumbcloth or carpeting of grey or mixed colours. 
The Board of Trustees declared that by the use of foreign wool the flannels 
of Galashiels are finer than anything made in Scotland, if not even the 
finest of Welsh manufacture. Blankets, partly of the Scotch and partly of 
the English mode of manufacture, are extensively produced from the white 
or unlaid wool of the country, and blanket shawls of many colours are in 
great demand, the price for these ranging from 3s to 30s each. A new style 
of cloth has also been introduced, called Indiana, used for ladies* dresses, 
costing 8s or 9s per yard. The total number of spindles is 5336, the children 
employed in the mills range from eight to fourteen years, and are paid 
at the rate of sixpence per day of eleven hours." 

i8;^7 In 1837 the Clothiers' Corporation consisted of the follow- 

ing members, who are divided into sections, showing the several 
branches of the trade which each firm pursued, — 

** Woollen Cloth, Shawls, and Tartans. 
Robert & George Lees, Galabank Mill. Geo. Roberts & Co 
Henry Sanderson, Weirhaugh Mill. 

Woollen Cloth 
Ballantyne & Tait, Buckholmside. 



Bridge Street. 
Sanderson, Gala Mill. 



Hugh & Geo. Dobson, Bridge Street. 
Gill, Sime, & Co., High Street. 
Metcalf & Ballantyne, Wilderhaugh. 
Waddel & Turnbull, Buckholmside. 
Joshua Wood & Sons, Buckholmside. 



Robt. & Alex. 

and Shawls. 

Thomas Davidson, Bridge Street. 

William Dobson, Netherhaugh. 

Inglis & Paterson, Buckholmside. 

James Roberts, Huddersfield. 

Robt. Walker & Sons, Wilderhaugh. 



w 



354 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Woollen Cloth. 
James Bathgate, Netherhaugh. T. & G. Clapperton, Wilderhaugh 

John & Walter Cochrane, Mid Mill. Robert Frier, Thomson's Mill. 

William Gill, Overhaugh. George Paterson, Huddersfield. 

Robert Paterson, Buckholmside. William Roberts, Waulkmillhead 

James Rutherford, Thomson's Mill (Rosebank). 

Tartans. 
James Sanderson, Bridge Street. 

Manufacturers of Yarn. 
Gilbert Dalgliesh, Thomson's Mill. Robert Frier, Thomson's Mill. 

James Rutherford, Bridge Street. Geo. Roberts & Co., Bridge Street. 

James Walker, Island Street. James Sanderson, Bridge Street. 

Joshua Wood & Sons, Buckholmside. 

Blankets. 
Thomas Davidson, Bridge Street. Gill, Sime, & Co., High Street. 

Flannels 
William Gill, Overhaugh. James Rutherford, Bridge Street. 

Hosiery. 
Wm. & And. Hislop, Bridge Street. James Walker, Island Street." 

The first steam engine for manufacturing purposes was 
erected in 1836 at Ladhope Mill, it being of twenty-five horse 
power; but, while steam was used for stationary engines, 
the locomotive was as yet unknown in the district. All the raw 
material was brought and the finished goods removed by the 
carriers, who at this time created a considerable amount of 
feeling by endeavouring to raise the rates forty per cent, for 
carrying goods between Galashiels and Edinburgh. This 
increase was resented by a large section of the Corpora- 
tion, who took steps to provide other means of transit for their 
goods, independent of the local carriers. 
1838 In 1838 negotiations were entered into with James Marshall, 



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356 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



the very least been tripled during the last ten years. This great increase of 
capital taken in connection with the superior skill of her manufacturers and the 
industrious character of the population, for which Galashiels has been long 
distinguished, affords the surest guarantee of a career of commercial 
prosperity. 

Notwithstanding the large additions that have been made to the size of 
the town during the last few years, every house is occupied and the demand 
continues unabated. 

^^4^ In 184 1 an incident took place, which, consideringf the 

opportunities which existed at the time, was fortunately of 
rare occurrence. It was customary in fine weather to leave 
the cloth upon the tenters overnight, and advantage was 
taken of this practice to carry off a quantity of cloth from two 
manufactories. The Corporation offered a reward of ^^50, which 
was supplemented by ;^20 from the counties of Roxburgh and 
Selkirk for the capture of the thief. There were no policemen at 
this time in the town, and the SheriflF-officer, named James 
Wright, took up the case. He succeeded in tracking the thief 
to Edinburgh, where he ran him down in a lodging-house in the 
West Port. Procuring the services of the nearest policeman, 
they entered the room where the culprit was sleeping, and 
effected the arrest. When Wright claimed the reward, he found 
the policeman had also lodged a claim, and, till the question was 
settled, the reward was withheld. An action was raised in the 
Sheriff Court, but the dispute remained unsettled till 1846, 
when the policeman died. Wright then made a compromise 
with the representatives of the deceased, and received the jQ^o 
without further trouble. 

1843 In 1843 the Corporation consisted of the following members. 



"Robert & George Lees, Galabank Mill. 
T. & G. Clapperton, Wilderhaugh. 
Stephen Metcalf, ,, 

Robert Walker & Sons, ,, 
J. & A. Watson, ,, 

Mr Cruden, ,, 

Wm. Roberts & Son, Waulkmillhead. 
Q. Roberts & Son, Huddersfield Mill. 



Gilbert Dalgliesh, Rosebank Mill. 

William Gill, 

Robert Frier, ,, 

Gill, Sime, & Co., Botany Mill. 

Henry Sanderson, ,, 

J. & W. Cochrane, Mid Mill. 

J. Bathgate & Son, Nether Mill. 

R, & A. Sanderson & Co., Gala Mill. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 



357 



James Roberts, Huddersfield Mill 
George Paterson, ,, 

Davidson & Monteith, Ladhope Mill. 
Waddell & Turnbull, 
Ballantyne & Tait, ,, 



Sanderson & Sibbald, Abbots Mill. 
Joshua Wood & Sons, Ladhope Mill. 
Francis Inglis, Ladhope Mill. 
James Graham, Ladhope Mill." 



1849 Fn 1849 Francis Inglis was Deacon of the Corporation, and 

he has left on record that the price of the ticket for the dinner 
was six shillings, that for the ball eight shillings, or com- 
bined twelve shillings. On this occasion there remained a 
balance of ^^4, which was given towards the relief of the 
deserving poor. 

The first difficulty between employers and employed now 
occurred. The manufacturers considered that they were handi- 
capped in consequence of having to pay a higher rate for weaving 
than was paid elsewhere, and they drew up a new statement 
based upon an exhaustive inquiry into the rates of payment 
current in various parts of the country. This was submitted to 
a meeting of the weavers, numbering about 500, who unani- 
mously agreed to reject it on the ground that their incomes 
would be reduced from ten to thirty per cent. With the 
exception of the men employed in Galabank Mill, the proprietors 
of which had taken no part in the proposed reduction, the whole 
weavers in the town struck work. At the same time the men 
drew up a statement on which they would be willing to resume 
work, and presented it to their employers. This, however, was 
rejected on account of it raising the rate in certain respects 
even higher than formerly. One firm offered their men eighteen 
shillings per week to resume work, but the offer was declined. 
The weavers sent deputations to all the manufacturing towns on 
the Borders, as well as to Alloa, Tillicoultry, &c. They were 
provided by the employers with letters of introduction to the 
manufacturers in these places, so that they might be enabled to 
obtain credible information regarding the various rates paid 
elsewhere. After the deputies returned anxious and protracted 
meetings were held between the contending parties. A fresh 
statement was mutually agreed upon, and the strike came to an 



358 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

end. The result was that in the coarser kinds of work the weaver 
gained an advantage, while in regard to finer goods the benefit 
lay on the side of the employer. One point, however, was 
gained by the weavers, — they were relieved from the expense of 
winding the weft, while those who worked outside the weaving- 
shop belonging to the firm by which they were employed w^ere 
also relieved from payment of gas. During the continuance 
of the dispute the operatives were temperate and peaceful, while 
the employers were forbearing, and showed a readiness to 
negotiate. 

The manners and customs which prevailed in the factories 
during the first half of the present century exhibit a strong 
contrast to those now in vogue. At that time the relation 
between employer and employed was of a much more intimate 
nature, and both stood on a footing of greater familiarity with 
each other than now prevails. In the earlier years of the 
woollen trade the employer was generally a skilled workman, 
and took an active part in forwarding the work in one or other 
of the various processes in the manufacture of cloth. In course 
of time, as business expanded, his presence was more required 
in the office than in the wareroom or finishing department. 
The hours of labour were then longer, and, owing to the 
introduction of self-acting machinery, the work is now lighter 
than it was at that period. In those days there was no lodge 
erected at the mill gates, no fines for being late in the morning 
or at meal hours, and the weavers, in particular, came and 
went at such times as suited their convenience. The wages were 
paid monthly, on the Saturday afternoon, and the Monday follow- 
ing was by a number of weavers usually devoted to the worship 
of Bacchus. The faithful votaries used to meet at various places 
in the locality. The leafy glades of Gala Woods, the sunny side of 
Buckholm Hill, and the well in the Rye Haugh were favourite 
summer resorts on such occasions. There they poured libations 
as long as their cash lasted or a worshipper could be found sober 
enough to ^^rin the cutter.'' This habit to many was but the 
prelude to a drinking bout that extended over the week, which 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



359 



proved a source of grief and vexation to their wives and families. 
In connection with one of these long-suffering, females the 
following incident is narrated. Her husband was a weaver in 
Rosebank Mill, and one morning at the breakfast hour she 
personally conducted him to his work. Taking up her position 
in the wooded bank on the opposite side of the road, she sat 
down to knit her stocking, grimly determined to keep him sober 
for that day at least. The time went slowly past, workers came 
and went, but she was certain Sandy was not amongst them. 
About mid-day she observed two or three of his drouthy cronies 
come out, one of them staggering under a heavy basket 
apparently filled with yarn, with which he struggled round the 
corner and disappeared. The dinner hour came at length, but 
Sandy did not make his appearance. Waiting till her patience 
was exhausted, she entered the mill and made inquiry regarding 
him, and, to her dismay, was told that he had not been seen for 
at least a couple of hours. She suddenly remembered the 
basket, and, filled with suspicion, she hurried off to that once 
favourite howff, ^^ Nannie Knox's,'' where the first thing she saw 
was the identical basket with a few cuts of yarn lying in the 
bottom, and beside it Sandy and his faithful cronies '^a' as fou 
as pipers." 

Many of the weavers were enthusiastic anglers, and when 
their web was in no special hurry they frequently indulged 
in a day's angling, if Tweed happened to be in good con- 
dition. Regularly, in the middle of the three ^^yokings" into 
which the day was divided, the weavers and others made their 
appearance at the mill door for the purpose of indulging in a 
smoke, while it was not uncommon during working hours to 
observe a group of female workers making the round of the 
drapers' shops busily employed in examining the finery there 
displayed. 



CHAPTER XIII. 

1 85 1 ^ I ^HE year 1851 is memorable in the industrial world on 
I account of the first great International Exhibition held 
^ in London. Galashiels manufacturers were the largest 
contributors in the woollen and worsted trade on that occasion, 
occupying 2016 feet of hanging space. The following description 
of their exhibits is extracted from an article in the Scotsman of 
that date, — 

*' Out of the sixteen firms belonging to Galashiels, eleven show, the first 
being J. & A. Watson, who are strongest in their fine specimens of clan 
plaids. (These goods were made from the finest German lambs' wool procur- 
able, and woven four threads in the split, the warp being 109, and the weft 
120 cut.) Messrs Cochrane, who have some excellent examples of double- 
milled tweeds in clan and fancy patterns. Messrs Sanderson & Sibbald, with 
excellent spring fabrics in fancy patterns. William Roberts & Co., specimens 
of single-milled or summer tweeds of fine light texture. R. & T. Dickson, 
tweeds with the check brought beautifully out by raising it on the surface, also 
some very fine wool shawls on mixed grounds. Inglis & Brown, fine sample 
of checked tweeds in various colours, which are brought out in a very superior 
style. Robert & George Lees, excellent samples of six-quartet clan tartans, 
and a very fine variety of clan plaids. H. Ballantyne & Son, a very large 
assortment of clan and fancy tweeds, and long double shawls deriving a stylish 
appearance from being greatly enlarged in pattern. T. & G. Clapperton, fine 
wool shawls and single-milled fancy tweeds. James Sime & Co. — the visitor 
will be struck with some specimens of white wool shawls made from perhaps 
the finest Saxony yarn that has been yet spun in the district. Also a variety 
of patterns of clan and mixed grounds, with one or two wool checked vestings, 
a gentleman's travelling plaid of very fine wool, weighing 8 J lbs., and a 
shepherdess plaid of very fine yarn and beautiful pattern. R. & A. Sanderson 
& Co., a fine assortment of clan and mixed long shawls." 

At the conclusion of the exhibition medals were awarded, of 
which twelve came to Scotland. Of these, four came to Gala- 
shiels, three to Paisley, and one each to Glasgow, Aberdeen, 
Alloa, Hawick, and Selkirk. The successful competitors in 
Galashiels were Inglis & Brown, for Scotch tweeds; Robert & 

360 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



George Lees, for plaids, shawls, andcloakings; Willis I 
& Co., Scotch tweeds; and R. & A. Sanderson I 
Scotch woollen clan and fancy plaids. 

1854 On the ist September, 1854, the new Act came i 
tion for regulating the employment of children a 
persons. Under its provisions none under eighteer 
age were allowed to be employed before six a.m. 
six P.M.; this regulation also applied to all fema 
manufacturers were also required to fence and box 
parts of shafting and gearing by which the first m 
communicated to any machine. 

In connection with the proposed exhibition in 

1855 1855, a meeting of the woollen trade was convene< 
purpose of having the industry suitably represented 
occasion, and it was resolved, — 

** I. — That the meeting respond to the invitation of the Imperial ( ' 

of France to contribute specimens of their productions t I 

Industrial Exhibition. 
II. — While the advantages to be derived are not apparent, it is 

strengthen the good understanding between the two natic \ 
III. — That to secure a complete exhibition of the woollen manu 

Scotland, a public subscription should be entered into for 1 

of defraying the expense." 

A committee was appointed to carry out th 
resolution. Owing to the limited space put at the dij 
the Scottish woollen manufacturers, the idea of exhibi 
body was departed from, but it was left optional on th 
individual firms to apply for space. 

1859 In 1859 a new system was inaugurated by Robert Sa 

Deacon of the Corporation, who departed from tl 
honoured but stereotyped minute regarding the annua 
and ball, which the great majority of former Deacons c 
to have considered the only occurrence throughout 1 
worthy of being placed on record. On this occasion, h 
the Deacon states that, — 



362 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

" The history of the trade for the past year has been marked by steady and 
unchecked prosperity. Numerous extensions have been made, and many 
important improvements in machinery have been effected." 

This gratifying position seems to have been maintained, 
as the next Deacon, J. Dalziel, also leaves on record that, — 

'* Notwithstanding the unsettled state of America owing to the civil war, 
as well as the almost prohibitive clauses of the Morill Tariff, the trade of the 
town has continued in a flourishing condition.'* 

1862 In 1862 Adam Cochrane, jun., recorded that, — 

** Upon the whole, the trade of the town had been good, but the French 
treaty had not realized the expectations formed of it so far as the trade of 
Galashiels was concerned, the goods being of too high a quality to suit the 
continental trade. The goods sent from Galashiels to the Exhibition 
attracted considerable notice, and showed the very decided progress that had 
been made since the former Exhibition held in London eleven years ago." 

In connection with this exhibition, the following awards 
were received: — J. & W. Cochrane, medal for superior Scotch 
tweeds and shepherd's plaids; and George Lees, medal for 
superior Saxony wool tartans in cloakings, shawls, and Saxony 
wool tweeds. 

1863 Previous to 1863 no proper provision had been made for the 
purpose of extinguishing fires, which, considering the inflam- 
mable nature of the various factories, was much required. 
Hitherto, when a conflagration took place, the only method 
of coping with it had been by means of pails, which were 
passed from hand to hand by a line of men extending between 
the outbreak and the nearest water supply. At this time 
the Manufacturers' Corporation offered to present the town 
with a fire engine on the condition that the Local Authority 
provided suitable accommodation for it, together with a com- 
petent staff to ensure its being properly handled. This offer 
was accepted, and the Corporation assessed themselves according 
to the number of sets of carding machines in the possession of 
each member. Upon this being done, it was found that there 
were sixty and a half sets in operation. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



3^3 



It is stated by William Brown, the Deacon at this time, that 

**The trade of the town has kept remarkably good, the output of 
goods exceeding anything previously recorded in the history of the trade. 
Important additions had been made to the productive power of several of the 
mills, and- a great difficulty existed in obtaining workers owing to the want of 
house accommodation." 

1866 Previous to 1866 the wages in the factories had been paid 

monthly on the Saturday afternoon. At this time the change to 
fortnightly payments on the Tuesday was introduced. 

At this time a movement was originated by Adam Cochrane, 
jun., for the purpose of procuring copies of the portraits of Sir 
Walter Scott and the Rev. Dr Douglas. It was proposed 
that they should be hung in some public place as a fitting 
memorial of the services these gentlemen had rendered to the 
trade of the town in the earlier years of its existence. These 
portraits were painted by F. Cruikshanks, Edinburgh, from 
the originals, in both cases by Raeburn. A deputation headed 
by George Bathgate, manufacturer, waited upon the Magis- 
trates and Commissioners, and stated that it was the desire 
of, the subscribers that the portraits be hung in the Public 
Hall and held in trust by the Magistrates and Commis- 
sioners for the behoof of the inhabitants of Galashiels. The 
Chief Magistrate thanked the deputation, and accepted the 
portraits on these conditions. Afterwards the question arose 
regarding the power to remove these portraits in the event of 
municipal buildings being erected. The matter was discussed, 
and it was agreed that, in terms of the heading on the subscription 
sheet, ^^they were to be kept in the Public Hall, and be held by 
the Commissioners of Police as public property.'' 



CHAPTER XIV. 

1870 ^ I ^HE question of river pollution had been agitated for some 

I time by the riparian proprietors on the Tweed below 
Galafoot, and at length a Commission visited the 
district and took evidence bearing on the question, representatives 
being present from Hawick, Selkirk, and Innerleithen. In the 
course of the evidence given by John Cochrane it transpired that 
the annual turn-over of woollen goods in Galashiels amounted 
to ;^50o,ooo; wages paid, ;^ioo,ooo; and the value of buildings 
and machinery engaged in the woollen trade was estimated at 

jC ^OOyOOO. 

In the official report on the woollen fabrics shown by the 

1871 Galashiels manufacturers in the exhibition held in 187 1, it is 
stated that 

*'The Galashiels display of trouserings and suitings was extremely good. 
Those from Adam L. Cochrane Bros, are novel in design and of very fine 
finish. Messrs Brown Bros, have also ten specimens, well made, soft and 
clear in colour. J. & W. Cochrane's tweeds from coloured wool, and James 
Mitchell & Co.*s fancy tweeds, shepherd plaids and eccentric suitings are good 
specimens of the manufacture in Galashiels, and the ten specimens made from 
Australian wool by J. Sibbald & Son are remarkable for their very high 
quality of material and structure, and for their cleanness and perfect finish. 
The summer and winter tweeds of pure Colonial wool are a specialty of the 
manufacturers of Galashiels and are well represented in the exhibits of Messrs 
P. & R. Sanderson, whilst Messrs R. & A. Sanderson show the home style of 
Cheviots, with some good qualities from Saxony wool.** 

Owing to the rapid extension of the town, it now became a 
matter of pressing importance that greater facilities should be 
afforded in the matter of obtaining ground for building purposes. 
In these circumstances, the following letter was received by the 
Deacon of the Corporation, — 

364 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS; 365 

1872 Hotel de Londres, Pau, 

Les Basses Pyrenees, France, 
4/A October f 1872. 
My Dear Sir, 

It is, I need hardly say, matter of sincere regret that I 
cannot be present at your approaching festivities, to which I need hardly add 
I wish every success. 

The unbroken success in trade naturally holds out bright prospects for 
the future of the town, and it may be perhaps not without interest to your 
Corporation to know that I am at present maturing a plan, the primary object 
of which is to impart a greater concentration of the building operations, and 
to remove the inconveniences attendant on the narrowness of the whole 
position of the town at present. 

^Whilst I do not undervalue the pecuniary advantages which my property 
will derive from the proposed scheme of enlargement, it is not without reluct- 
ance that I have sacrificed a good deal of the amenity of my policy, but I could 
not but see that I had either to a certain extent to deviate from the policy of 
my family as regards the development of the commercial interests of the town, 
or else adhere to that policy in its integrity by meeting the growing wants, 
which were practically the creation of that policy per se. 

It has been a matter of sincere regret that I was not able to be at Gala in 
summer, when I could have consulted with many conversant with the whole 
subject and have derived more practical information than I at present possess 
as to the growing requirements of the burgh 

But I have never yet discovered that delay in the carrying-out and matur- 
ing of public undertakings operated otherwise than beneficially toward the 
undertakings themselves and the public interest, and I do not believe any of 
them have suffered much injury in consequence. 

It is possible that making such a statement is hardly consistent with the 
official business of your Corporation, but still, as your Corporation has been 
the main instrument of enlarging the town, I thought it only right to acquaint 
you with the character of the plans being organised, which, I doubt not, you 
will kindly excuse. 

I am, Yours very truly, 

(Signed) Hugh Scott." 
To the Deacon of the Manufacturers' 
Corporation of Galashiels. 

At a meeting of the Corporation held shortly afterwards, 
Adam Cochrane, jun., proposed 

**That as an expression of the high appreciation in which the policy of 
Major Scott has been held in time past, he be requested to do the Corporation 
the honour of sitting for a full length portrait, to be hung in the Public Hall 
with those of Sir Walter Scott and Dr Douglas.** 



366 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The Corporation agreed to the proposal, and Mr Scott 
consented to give sittings for this purpose. The portrait was 
painted by George Reid, A.R.S.A., and unveiled in the Public 
1873 Hall on the 26th December, 1873. 

Shortly before this event a rather noteworthy incident 
occurred. An embassy from Japan having visited this country, 
they notified their intention of paying a visit to Galashiels. The 
Deacon of the Corporation, W. A. Plummer Sanderson, and 
other representative gentlemen met the distinguished strangers at 
the Railway Station, and drove off to inspect the factory of J. & W. 
Cochrane. A very careful inspection of the various processes of 
manufacture was made, and information requested regarding rates 
of wages, value of goods, &c. After spending an hour and a half 
in this manner, the visitors were conveyed to the Public Hall, 
where they were entertained by the Corporation, the local com- 
mittee of the South of Scotland Chamber of Commerce, and the 
Municipality. The Deacon presided, and John Morrison fulfilled 
the duties of croupier. After lunch, the loyal toasts were given 
by the chairman, and the croupier gave ^'The Mikado of Japan.'' 
The principal ambassador replied in Japanese, which was inter- 
preted by his private secretary. The Deacon then gave the toast, 
**The Ambassadors from Japan," which was also interpreted 
and replied to. One of the embassy proposed the health of 
the Deacon and Corporation, to which the Deacon replied. 
Adam Cochrane, jun., proposed the healths ol Sir Harry Parkes, 
General Alexander, and Mr Ashiton, who travelled along with 
the embassy. William Sime gave *'The Ladies,'' which was 
responded to by Kenneth Cochrane. The proceedings then 
terminated by the band playing the National Anthem. 



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CHAPTER XV. 



THE centenary of the Corporation was celebrated on the 
13th October, 1876, on which occasion ninety gentle- 
men dined in the Public Hall. The Deacon, James 
Mitchell, presided, and was supported on the right and left 
respectively by Sir Graham Montgomery, M.P., and G. O. 
Trevelyan, M.P. Andrew Brown, the Deacon-elect, acted as 
croupier. The chairman gave the loyal toasts. Captain Sime 
responding on behalf of the ist Selkirk (Gala) Rifles. The 
croupier gave ^^Both Houses of Parliament,'' to which reply 
was made by Sir Graham Montgomery. The Deacon pro- 
posed **The Health of Mr Trevelyan,'' who replied in 
a lengthy speech. John Murray of Glenmayne proposed 
** Major Scott of Gala." *^The Clergy" was proposed by 
Alexander Rutherford, and replied to by Dr Gloag. Mr 
Trevelyan proposed ''The Town and Trade," to which the 
Deacon responded. ''The Sister Burghs" was given by 
William Brown of Galahill, and replied to by Walter Laing, 
Hawick; and Ex-Provost Roberts, Selkirk. John Sanderson of 
London proposed "The Agricultural Interest," to which Mr 
Hopkirk, Langlee, replied. Adam Cochrane, jun., proposed 
"Our Visitors," to which Mr Russell of Glasgow responded. 
The remaining toasts were "The Deacon-elect," "The Corpor- 
ation of Galashiels," and "The Ladies." 

During the course of the proceedings James Smail, banker, 
was called upon for a song, and complied by singing, amid 
much applause, the following verses of his own composition, — 

** Auld time again, wi' faithfu* hand, 

Has brought the season roun*. 
When festive joy takes fair command 

O' guid auld Gala toun. 
When festive joy takes fair command, 

As in the days langsyne; 

367 



368 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

When fathers o* the present band 

Nae mirth or glee wad tyne. 
And merry hearted here we meet, 

On this centennial day; 
It\s better far to laugh than g^reet 

O'er time that's passed away. 

For there' nae luck aboot them, nane, 

Nae pluck ava, 
Wha grimly sit an* sich an* grane 

O'er pleasure fled awa. 

Langsyne the wark of honest men 

Brought credit to the toun; 
And she has credit yet, we ken, 

. And likewise some renown. 
The * Gala Greys' o' early days. 

What though their style was tame, 
They made the vera best o' claes, 

And brought some honest fame. 
And now though we the world round 

Hae webs o' every hue; 
In heart they're still unchanged and sound, 

Our tweeds are leal and true. 

And there's nae buck, howe'er sae crouse, 

Nae man ava; 
Nor lady, be she brisk or douce. 

But we can deed fu' braw. 

Trade's fickle changes in the past 

Were met wi' pluck and skill; 
And should her sky again o'ercast 

We hae the weapons still. 
But fortune guid has waved her flag 

Around us mony a year; 
Though whiles, when orders stop or lag, 

The times look kind o' queer. 
When neebour then wi' neet>our meets, 

Lang faces oft they draw; 
For big returns and sma' repeats, 

A very Job wad staw. 

And there's *Soor Plums' in Galashiels, 

Soor looks an' a'. 
When ** pigs' come back frae buyer chiels 

Wha dinna care a straw. 

• Pig's — i.e.f rejected goods. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 369 

True men frae peasant up to king 

A* work wi* might and main; 
And labour never fails to bring 

A pleasure o' her ain. 
The secret here of a* success 

Is never-flinching toil; 
And men and masters forward press 

To join in the turmoil. 
The vera Gala rins wi* speed 

To join us in the race; 
Syne toddles doon to rest in Tweed, 

And freshen up her face. 

And there's great glee in Galashiels, 

Nae doot ava; 
When merrily rin her thousand wheels, 

And hands are working a'." 

1878 In 1878 the Deacon reported that the state of trade vv^as dull, 

aggravated by the failure of the City of Glasgow Bank. 

At the Paris Exhibition a gold medal was awarded to Adam 
L. Cochrane & Bros., while silver medals came to William 
Brown & Sons and R. & A. Sanderson & Co. 

A meeting of riparian proprietors on Tweedside was held 
at St Boswells for the purpose of considering what steps should 
be taken to put a stop to the pollution of the Tweed, caused by 
the discharges from the various factories in the town, and the 
result was communicated to the Deacon of the Corporation, 
James Sanderson of Woodlands, in the following terms, — 

**66 Queen Street, Edinburgh, nth November, 1878. 

Gentlemen, — A meeting of riparian proprietors on the river Tweed was 
held at St Boswells on the ist inst. in order to consider the steps to be taken 
for preventing the pollution which at the present is discharged from the Gala 
into the Tweed, and which has of late years enormously increased, thus 
creating a serious nuisance to the lower proprietors on the river, and detriment 
to their properties. 

Lord Polwarth was in the chair, and there was a large attendance of 
proprietors and others interested. The meeting, after full consideration, came 
to a resolution, authorising us to address this communication to you, and to 
request you to inform us whether you are prepared to take steps, by filtration of 
the discharge from your mills or otherwise, for putting a stop to this nuisance. 

X 



370 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

We are directed to report the answer which we receive to this communi- 
cation to a future meeting, and should your reply not be satisfactory, it is 
intended to take proceedings against you and the other mill owners to enforce 
your adoption of remedial measures. We shall therefore be glad to hear from 
you in reply to this letter within a fortnight from this date. 
We are, Your obedient servants, 

(Signed) Tods, Murray, & Jamibson. " 

A meeting of the Corporation was called, and the above 
communication was read, when it was agfreed to do everything* 
that was practicable to remedy the pollution complained of. 
Notwithstanding" that a reply was sent to this effect, and also the 
information that several firms were actually proceeding with the 
construction of works for the purpose, the riparian proprietors 
refused to accept of their assurance, and raised an action against 
them at common law. Every individual mill-owner was served 
with a summons from the Court of Session. Negotiations were 
opened with the view of staying proceedings and settling the 
matter out of Court, but without success. 
1880 During the first year the case passed through several stages 

in the Court of Session. In July, 1880, a joint minute was 
arranged between the parties, in which the defenders expressed 
their willingness, if it was found necessary, to adopt such 
further remedial measures as would be considered best calcu- 
lated to remove any ground of complaint on the part of the 
pursuers. Both parties concurred in craving that the matter 
be remitted to Professor Crum Brown, with duties as detailed in 
the following interlocutor, — 

** The Lord Ordinary in respect of joint minutes Nos. 19 and 20 of process, 
grants decree of declarator against the defenders subscribing the same in 
terms of the admissions therein, and decerns : — Of consent remits to Professor 
Crum Brown, Edinburgh, with power to him to employ such engineering 
assistance as he may find requisite to inspect the said defenders' works, and 
the arrangements which these defenders or any of them have made or 
propose to make to prevent the pollution of the Tweed from their works, and 
to report whether the said arrangements are sufficient for that purpose, and if 
not, what other arrangements would in his opinion be required. Finds said 
defenders liable in expenses, as the same shall be taxed by the Auditor. 

(Signed) And. R. Clark." 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 371 

The final report of Professor Crum Brown described the 
chemical and other expedients applied at Gala Mills to the 
soapy liquids, spirit, dye liquors, &c., and he stated that the 
arrangements made by R. & A. Sanderson & Co. at Gala 
Mills were, if maintained in good order and worked in accord- 
ance with the system in use there, sufficient to prevent the 
pollution of the Tweed from the above works. The report also 
stated that there was no trace of any pollution of the Gala from 
the mills of James Mitchell & Co. and Currie, M^Dougall, & 
Scott. Lord Kinnear considered the report and issued the 
following interlocutor, — 

^^2^rdjuney 1883. 
1 003 <*The Lord Ordinary having heard parties on the report of Professor 

Crum Brown, No. 25 of process, approves of said report. Finds that as 
regards the defenders, Messrs R. & A. Sanderson & Co., Messrs Currie, 
McDougall, & Scott, and Messrs James Mitchell & Co., it is unnecessary to 
pronounce any further order on the merits of the case, and dismisses the 
action so far as directed against them and decerns, and, as regards the other 
defenders, remits to Professor Crum Brown, with power as formerly, to take 
engineering assistance to see executed the various works requiring to be 
constructed by the defenders, in terms of said report, and of the minutes 
lodged for them Nos. 35, 36, 37, 38, 39 and 40 of process: — Further, directs 
Professor Crum Brown to report at the end of six months from this date the 
progress made in the execution of the various works: — Finds the pursuers 
entitled to expenses to this date, so far as not already disposed of, and remits 
the account thereof to the Auditor to tax and report. 

(Signed) A. S. Kinnear." 

Shortly afterwards the following interlocutor was pro- 
nounced in connection with the case, — r 

**The Lord Ordinary having heard parties on the report of Professor 
Crum Brown approves of said report, finds that as regards the defenders, 
Messrs A. L. Cochrane & Bros, and Messrs Hugh Sanderson & Son, it is 
unnecessary to pronounce any further order on the merits of the case, and 
dismisses the action, so far as directed against them and decerns. Finds 
pursuers entitled to expenses." 

^885 On the 6th May, 1885, the Deacon of the Corporation, 

George McDougall, informed Professor Crum Brown that all 
the works were completed, and, after a minute inspection, the 



372 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Professor expressed himself much pleased with the result; and 
at length, after seven years' worry, the pollution case was 
brought to a close. 
1886 On the 1 6th January, 1886, the final report was issued to 

the Court of Session, in which the various purification works 
throughout the town were declared to be * ^permanent and 
satisfactory." Although difficult to estimate correctly, the cost 
of these works at the various factories was at least £sSyOOOj 
in addition to the legal expenses, which amounted to ^{1^2 160. 

With a view of acknowledging the valuable services rendered 
by the firm of R. & A. Sanderson & Co. in connection with the 
purification scheme, the Deacon of the Corporation was 
instructed to communicate with them in reference to some re- 
cognition of the skill and trouble which they had shown and 
taken in the case. In reply the Deacon received the following 
letter, — 

**Dear Sir, 

We are favoured with yours of the 26th inst. and desire to thank 
the Corporation for the resolution which you have been kind enough to convey 
to us. Your letter we esteem to be sufficient recognition of any little service 
we have been to the members of the Corporation with reference to the 
purification of the discharges from the mills. 

Yours very truly, 

(Signed) R. & A. Sanderson & Co." 

The death of John Cochrane occurred in 1884. In him the 
town lost the last connecting link with the men who founded the 
woollen industry of Galashiels. Mr Cochrane was born in 
1793, ^"d during his long life had always resided in the place of 
his birth. He had seen it emerge by leaps and bounds from 
the cluster of cottages round the old Cross to the busy town 
now known over the world in connection with the tweed trade. 

" They have passed away, 
The patriarch heroes of our trade's success, 
The good old pioneers whose faithfulness, 
Untiring energy, and skill have won 
The world's applause, and lit the blessed sun 
Of bounteous plenty in their native vale. 
Where happy concord and goodwill prevail. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



373 



Now none are left; 
The whitened head, the old familiar face 
Is never seen, even in the very place 
Which their shrewd sense and eident hands have made. 
Our streets, now crowded, know them not who laid 
All their foundations, as with pride we know, 
In the hard fight and toil of long ago.'' 

In bringing the history of the Manufacturers' Corporation to 
a close, the following statistics are given to show the progress 
of the woollen trade of the town in the past, which may prove 
of interest and afford ground for comparison in the future, — 



NUMBER OF CARDING ENGINES IN 



1 79 1, I set. 

1794, 3 M 
1805, 7 M 

1818, 12 ,, 



1825, 14 set. 
1828, 15 „ 
1837, 22 ,, 
1840, 25 „ 



1843, 28 set. 

1846, 30 ,, 

1847, 36 ,, 
i853» 39 M 



1864, 60 set. 
1886, 114 ,, 
1896, 128 ,, 



1896 Ii^ 1896 there were 96, 152 mule spindles, 667 '^slow" power- 

looms making from forty-five to fifty picks per minute, and 448 
*^fast'' looms making from eighty to ninety picks. There 
were also twenty-eight broad looms having a reed space extend- 
ing to one hundred and thirty inches, and forty-five hand looms 
engaged in the production of tweeds, besides pattern looms, 
of which no note has been taken. 

The motive power employed was equal to 3598 indicated horse- 
power, viz., 31 10 from steam, 46 from gas, and 442 from water. 

In 1896 the Galashiels Manufacturers' Corporation consisted 
of the following firms, viz., — 

** Brown Brothers, Buckholm Mill; William Roberts & Co., Victoria Mill 
Arthur Dickson &Co., Wheatlands Mill; J. & W. Cochrane, Mid Mill; Hugh 
Sanderson & Son, Comelybank Mill; James Shaw & Brothers, Nether Mill 
J. & J. C. Dorward, Waukrigg Mill; J. & W. Roberts, Waverley Mill; George 
Lees & Co., Galabank Mill; George Paterson & Co., Huddersfield Mill 
William Brown & Sons, Wilderbank Mill; Currie, McDougall, & Scott, Lang 
haugh Mill; Keddie, Gordon & Co., Rosebank Mill; R. & A. Sanderson & Co. 
Gala Mill; Sime, Sanderson & Co., Botany Mill; Ovens, Hunter & Co. 
Abbot's Mill; A. L. Cochrane & Bros., Ltd., Netherdale Mill; Laidlaw & Fair- 
grieve, Ladhope Mill; P. & R. Sanderson, Tweed Mill; Sanderson & Murray, 
Ltd., Buckholmside Skin Works." 



374 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



The following are the names of those individuals who have 
acted as Deacon since 1785, with the date of their election, no 
record of the office-bearers having been kept previous to that 
period, 



1785, James Mercer. 

1786, John Roberts. 

1787, Richard Lees. 

1788, Adam Cochrane, 

1789, Robert Walker. 

1790, William Johnstone. 

1 79 1, David Grieve. 

1792, Robert Gill. 

1793, And. Henderson. 

1794, Hugh Sanderson. 

1795, William Thomson. 

1796, William Haldane. 

1797, James Sinie. 

1798, Andrew Young. 

1799, James Johnstone. 

1800, James Roberts. 

1801, George Murray. 

1802, John Roberts. 

1803, John Mercer. 

1804, George Paterson. 

1805, Thomas Mercer. 

1806, David Thomson. 

1807, Thomas Gill. 

1808, George Mercer. 

1809, John Lees. 

1810, William Brown. 

181 1, William Roberts. 

1812, Adam Dobson. 

1813, James Bathgate. 

1814, Robert Gill, jun. 

1815, Robert Walker. 

18 16, George Chisholm. 

1817, John Roberts, jun. 

18 18, William Dobson. 

1819, Alex. Sanderson. 

1820, Robert Walker. 

1 82 1, Joshua Wood. 

1822, John Fairgrieve. 



1823, James Rutherford. 

1824, James Brown. 

1825, John Cochrane. 

1826, Robert Sanderson. 

1827, James Roberts. 

1828, Walter Cochrane. 

1829, G. Roberts, jun. 

1830, Henry Brown. 

1831, Henry Sanderson. 

1832, Robert Paterson. 

1833, James Sanderson. 

1834, Robert Lees. 

1835, Thomas Davidson. 

1836, George Lees. 

1837, Henry Ballantyne. 

1838, .Alex. Sanderson. 

1839, Robert Gill, jun. 

1840, Adam Paterson. 

1841, William Paterson. 

1842, George Bathgate. 

1843, William Waddell. 

1844, Henry Monteith. 

1845, John Sibbald. 

1846, Thos. Clapperton. 

1847, John Roberts. 

1848, Andrew Watson. 

1849, Francis Inglis. 

1850, James Sime. 

1 85 1, Arthur Dickson. 

1852, Peter Sanderson. 

1853, A- L. Cochrane. 

1854, Richard Watson. 

1855, Hugh Roberts. 

1856, Wm. Sanderson. 

1857, William Brown. 

1858, William Roberts. 

1859, R. Sanderson. 
i860, James DalzieL 



18b I, Adam Cochrane, jr. 

1862, Henry Roberts. 

1863, William Brown. 

1864, Wm. A. Sanderson. 

1865, George Bogue. 

1866, Henry Brown. 

1867, Arch. Cochrane. 

1868, Kenneth Cochrane. 

1869, William Sime. 

1870, Adam Brown. 

1 87 1, R. Sanderson. 

1872, W. A. P. Sanderson. 

1873, Walter Cochrane. 

1874, William Laidlaw. 

1875, James Mitchell. 

1876, Andrew Brown. 

1877, Robert Lees. 

1878, James Sanderson. 

1879, Alex. L. Brown. 

1880, James Sanderson. 

1 88 1, George P. Dickson. 

1882, James R. Brown. 

1883, Walter Shaw. 

1884, Geo. McDougall. 

1885, James Brown. 

1886, James Dickson. 

1887, Gideon Brown. 

1888, Thomas Ovens. 

1889, W. Rodger. 

1890, James Dorward. 

1891, W. Roberts. 

1892, Anderson Dickson. 

1893, George D. Gibson. 

1894, A. J. Sanderson. 

1895, Robert Gordon. 

1896, John A. Cochrane. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



375 



In surveying the progress of the woollen trade in Galashiels 
for the past century, striking evidence is afforded of the changes 
that have occurred since the time when thirty narrow handlooms 
comprised the extent of its productive power. The old appli- 
ances and machinery have disappeared, and their places are taken 
by others which produce better goods at less cost. Notwith- 
standing the hardships suffered in the period of transition, it is 
at once a necessity and a register of our civilisation that newer and 
better methods should replace obsolete and older ones. As has 
been demonstrated in the history of the staple trade of the town, 
natural forces have been substituted for human hands, and the old 
methods practised by a preceding generation are known no 
more. However much the alteration may affect the interests of 
those concerned, the law that brings about such changes is 
stronger than human will, and, be the craft what it may, it must 
give place to methods and systems in accordance with the 
requirements or necessities of the age. 

Comparing the past with the present, wonderful has been 
the progress of the woollen trade of the town since the time 
when Sir Patrick Lindsay recorded that 

** At Galashiels are made a few Kerseys called *Galashiels Greys,' and were 
their wool better scribbled, their goods more milled and better finished, they 
might serve in place of the lowest priced Yorkshires for country wear to 
ordinary people and day labourers.** 

Woollen and worsted goods of the highest degree of 
excellence are now produced, and while the necessities of 
-* ordinary people and day labourers*' are not overlooked, the 
requirements of those **who wear soft clothing and are in kings' 
houses" are successfully met. 



DYERS' FLAG. 



T' 



CHAPTER XVI. 

The Dyers* Corporation. 

1778 ^ I ^HIS Corporation was instituted in 1778 for the mainten- 
ance and preservation of the rights and privileges of 
the dyeing craft in Galashiels. Only natives of the 
town who had served an apprenticeship were allowed to pursue 
the calling, except under restrictions, or by virtue of a money 
payment. 

The charter of the Corporation is now lost, and all that is 
recorded in the minute book is merely a list of the names of the 
office-bearers from 1778 to the present day. These officials were 
elected annually and consisted of a Deacon, two quarter-masters, 
an officer, a book-keeper, and a standard-bearer. 

In the early days of the town, when the annual festival took 
place, the three Corporations met at the houses of their respective 
Deacons. Preceded by the boys and girls employed in the 
various factories, the Weavers* Corporation commenced the 
procession by marching two deep to the abode of the Deacon of 
the Manufacturers* Corporation, where they were supplied with a 

376 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 377 

refreshment consisting of whisky and shortbread. Both Corpo- 
rations then marched off to join the Dyers, where further 
refreshments were supplied, and, headed by a band of fiddlers, 
they perambulated the town with their respective flags and other 
insignia displayed. 

After the march they retired to their respective inns, where 
they dined, the Manufacturers and Dyers, up to 1825, dining in 
company; and, so far as the adults were concerned, a ball 
in the evening finished up the festivities for that occasion. 
On the following day music was provided in one of the ball- 
rooms so as to afford opportunity for the boys and girls to 
indulge in a dance for an hour or two. 

The following were the laws and regulations of the 
Corporation, — 

** It is agreed by the incorporated trade of journeymen of Galashiels that 
none shall teach nor cause to be taught any (except those who either serve a 
lawful apprenticeship or is a dyer's son) neither here nor anywhere else, and it 
is also agreed that they shall curb any that is in the place, or shall come into 
it, to teach any person that does not belong to the business, and that the 
underwritten and the other laws of this book be put in execution, or if any 
draw back, they shall be punished as the majority shall agree. 
Law I. — There shall be a general meeting on the last Friday of September 

annually to elect a new Deacon and other office-bearers for 

regulating the Corporation. 
Law 2. — Any person that learns the art in this town shall have the privilege, 

while apprentice, for one shilling and sixpence. 
Law 3. — Any person that has served his time in this town, but not having 

received the privilege, may have it for three shillings. 
Law 4. — Any person not having served his time may have the privilege for 

five shillings. 
Law 5. — Any person that is out of the craft and wants the privilege shall pay 

seven shillings and sixpence. 
Law 6. — Those wishing to join us at our annual meeting shall pay one shilling. 
Law 7. — Any journeyman that comes and works in the town must pay one 

shilling and sixpence. 
Law 8. — Every apprentice or journeyman omitting to have himself brothered, 

shall pay double for the privilege, if he is not detained against 

his will. 
Law 9. — Every one shall appear at the call of the Deacon, under the penalty 

of one shilling, or give a satisfactory reason. 



378 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Law lo. — There are none to be brothered at the annual meeting except such 
as are wishing to enter the benevolent institution of Junior 
Clothiers, or going to leave the place, in such cases the Deacon, 
with two or more brothers, may administer the privilege. 

Law II. — All money received, either donations, premiums, fines, &c., must be 
paid into the treasurer of the Institution." 

Though this Corporation was intended for journeymen dyers, 
it does not appear to have been confined to the ranks of the 
workers. Many of the members of the Manufacturers' Corpo- 
ration also qualified for membership, as in the list of Deacons the 
following well-known names occur, — in 1779, Hugh Sanderson; 
1783, Richard Lees; 1794, John Lees; 1795, George Roberts; 
1807, John Roberts; and in 181 5, John Cochrane. 

On October nth, 1816, a Benevolent Institution was inau- 
1816 gurated in connection with the Corporation, the following being 
its constitution and rules, viz.: — 

**We, the subscribers hereof, considering the many advantages which 
may be derived from us joining together to make up a fund for our mutual 
relief in time of distress, do, therefore, resolve to form ourselves into a society, 
under the name of the Benevolent Institution of Junior Clothiers, for the 
express purpose of affording relief, chiefly to those of our number and craft 
who may fall into temporary distress, either by sickness or want of employ- 
ment, or any other casualty; and for carrying this purpose into effect, we bind 
and oblige ourselves strictly to adhere to the following laws and regulations. 
I. — There shall be a general meeting annually upon the last Friday of 
September, to receive new members, examine accounts, choose office- 
bearers for the following year, and the Deacon to appoint the place of 
meeting and warn the members by his officer. 
2. — That a committee be appointed, to consist of a president, clerk and 
treasurer, two examinators of books and accounts, and two ordinary 
members and any three of them to be a quorum, and the Deacon of 
the Junior Corporation always to be president of the committee. 
3. — That the committee shall have full power to transact all business for the 
good of the Institution, and to elect any common member or members 
to fill up any vacancy, and to be accountable to the general meeting 
for their intromissions. 
4. — No member shall continue in the same office longer than one year unless 
re-elected, and none to hold office except members of two years' 
standing. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 379 

5. — Entrants must pay two shillings in the name of entry money, and one 

shilling annually, and to have a badge of the Institution to be worn 

at the procession. 
6. — All premiums received shall be put into the fund for the benefit of the 

society. 
7. — None can be admitted as a member who is not initiated into the mysteries 

of the Corporation, except honorary members, who shall be admitted 

by paying — but shall hold no office. 
8. — Every member within three miles must attend the general meeting and 

clear the books, under the penalty of sixpence, and if he does not pay 

his arrears in two years, he shall forfeit his share of the funds and be 

excluded from being a member. 
9. — No gratuity to be given out of the funds before the loth October, 1818, 

except that mentioned in Act 12. 
10. — Any two members may draw upon the treasurer such a sum as may 

seem meet, by receiving a line signed by the president, without which 

no money can be paid. 
II. — None to reproach or revile a brother for having received aid, or speak 

evil of the society, under the penalty of one shilling and to be publicly 

censured by the president. 
12— Any member that may die without relatives, the Deacon shall be accounted 

as his eldest brother, and the Institution to pay the funeral charges. 
13. — ^The president to be entHled to a pair of gloves from every brother who 

shall be married in the course of his Deaconship, and if he marry he 

must pay unto the funds of the Institute 2s 6d. 
14. — The funds never to be reduced below five pounds. 
15. — All necessary expenses to be paid out of the funds. 
16. — Every general meeting may erase any of these rules or insert new ones as 

they may think proper, only every member who shall suggest any 

alteration shall deliver in writing his reasons for such, and the 

advantages that are supposed to result from it, when it shall either 

be thrown or carried by a majority of votes, but the Institute itself 

cannot be dissolved but by the consent of four-fifths of its members." 

The Committee consisted of John Cochrane, William 
Wilson, James Syme, jun.; James Brown, Henry Watson, 
Alexander Kyle, and James Roberts, jun. 

At the Michaelmas gathering in 18 16 the above laws 
were read over to the Manufacturers' Corporation. They 
expressed their approval^ and promised a donation of one 
guinea to the fund. The membership for the first year was 
thirty, the income amounted to jC^j ^s 6d, and the expenditure 



38o HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1818 to 17s 6d, leaving a balance of ;^2, los. A minute, dated 
25th September, 18 18, states that the above guinea had not been 
paid. At that date the institution appears to have collapsed, as 
nothing further is recorded concerning it. 

1825 From its origin in 1778 up to 1825, the senior and junior 

Clothiers, or, as they were styled, ^*The auld and young Dyers," 
dined in company. At that date the custom was departed from, 
and about the same time it would appear that so far as any trade 
purpose was concerned, the Dyers' Corporation commenced to 
decay. The only item of information which has been thought of 
sufficient importance to be recorded is contained in a marginal 
note in the minute book to the effect that ^* one member had five 
bairns in two years, three at one time and two at another.'* On 

1874 the 7th October, 1874, it was agreed that the properties 
belonging to the Corporation should be handed over to the 
custody of the committee of the Junior Clothiers' Benefit Society, 
and that for the future all initiations should take place at a 
meeting called in due form. 

The Corporation still exists and holds meetings for the 
admission of members, on payment of a. small fee, but it makes 
no profession of giving any technical benefit in return. The 
ritual used in the ceremony of brothering is kept secret, but 
whisperings may be heard of mystic rites and incantations per- 
formed upon the helpless neophyte, who, before matriculation, 
is compelled to engage in an equestrian performance mounted 
upon an animal not usually associated with that exercise. Some 
colour is given to the allegation from the fact that in recent 
years it has been found necessary to add to the staff of office- 
bearers two functionaries styled *^ goat keepers." 

The social festival is still observed, but its associations are 
all of the past. The basis of its existence is becoming narrower 
in proportion as the past is receding, and in all probability 
time will bring to an end even the very observance, as it has 
already done the strong and hearty enthusiasm with which it was 
once characterised. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



381 



The following list gives the names of the Deacons from 
the formation of the Corporation in 1778 till 1825, — 



"1778, Alexander Small. 

1779, Hugh Sanderson. 

1780, David Grieve. 

1 78 1, Robert Wilson. 

1782, George Johnstone. 

1783, Richard Lees. 

1784, And. Henderson. 

1785, William Hilson. 

1786, William Thomson. 

1787, Peter Thomson. 

1788, Adam Wilson. 

1789, Adam Young. 

1790, George Haldane. 

1791, William Wilson. 

1792, Thomas Rae. 

1793, John Mercer. 



1794, John Lees. 

1795, George Roberts. 

1796, Wm. Sanderson. 

1797, Wm. Douglas. 

1798, Alex. Finnie. 

1799, David Thomson. 

1800, George Paterson. 

1801, John Leitch. 

1802, And. Clapperton. 

1803, Char. Hutchinson. 

1804, Thomas Thomson. 

1805, John Hutchinson. 

1806, James Rutherford. 

1807, John Roberts. 

1808, James Scott. 

1809, ^' McDonald. 



18 10, Wm. Clapperton. 

181 1, John Turn bull. 

181 2, John Walker. 

181 3, Robert Paterson. 

1 814, James Brown. 
<Si5) John Cochrane. 

1 8 16, Alexander Kyle. 

1817, Thomas Wilson. 

18 18, Alex. Clapperton. 

1819, George Sommers. 

1820, Gilbert Dalgliesh. 

1821, Thos. Davidson. 

1822, David Knox. 

1823, Robert Dalgliesh. 

1824, John Brown. 

1825, James Henderson." 



CHAPTER XVII. 

THE following pages contain the history of the various 
factories in the town from their origin till 1896. In the 
early years of the Manufacturers' Corporation a number 
of names of Clothiers occur whose places of business are not 
referred to. This may be accounted for on the ground that these 
men confined their operations to weaving and finishing; and, 
their business being conducted on a small scale, the necessary 
accommodation was extremely limited. A few of these places still 
exist and are utilised for various purposes, but the great majority 
have disappeared. 

BucKHOLM Mill. 

The original portion of this factory was built in 1846 by 
Henry Sanderson, eldest son of Hugh Sanderson, one of the 
original owners of Botany Mill, where in 1825 they carried on 
business under the name of Hugh Sanderson & Son. 

The site had been previously occcupied by Buckholm Corn 
Mill, which was destroyed by fire in 1839. The area of ground 
comprising the original feu lay upon the north side of the Gala, 
and extended to four acres. It is practically freehold, having 
been purchased by Mr Sanderson from Mr Pringle of Tor- 
woodlee for jC^ooo; but, in order to preserve the superiority, 
the sum of one penny Scots per annum is paid. The water 
power is the finest in the town, having a fall of twenty-eight 
feet, driving two LeflFel turbines of 210 horse-power. It was 
secured by an agreement between Mr Pringle and Mr Scott of 
Gala, under which Mr Scott granted the right to the use of the 
water so far as his interests were affected for an annual pay- 
ment made by Mr Pringle; one of the conditions being that ^*the 
said water be returned to the Gala at a point not less than fifty 
yards above the source of the Galashiels Mill dam.'' 

382 



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Henry Sanderson George Lees 

David Thomson 
William Brown Andrew Watson 

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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 383 

During the period that Buckholm Mill was in the possession 
of Henry Sanderson it was partially occupied by Andrew & 
Richard Watson, Thomas & George Clapperton, and others. 
In 1850 it was acquired by the Messrs Brown, Selkirk, grandsons 
of William Brown (''The Baron"), who was one of the original 
owners of Nether Mill, and was a member of the Manu- 
facturers' Corporation in 1800. He acquired the name of 
**The Baron'' on account of his personal appearance and the 
amount of interest he took in all matters pertaining to the 
village. He died in 1847, and the name is perpetuated by the 
Baron's Close, between Paton Street and Albert Place. 

About 18 19 his sons James and Henry Brown started busi- 
ness on their own account in Galashiels, and in 1835 removed to 
Selkirk, where they erected the original portion of Ettrick Mills, 
both brothers being presented with the freedom of that burgh in 
recognition of the benefit they had conferred upon the local 
industry. 

James Brown died in 1853 and in 1859 the partnership was 
dissolved, when his sons William, Henry, and Adam acquired 
Buckholm Mill, where they commenced business under the name 
of Brown Brothers. 

In 1875 Adam Brown retired from the firm, and in 1883 
William Brown died, followed two years later by Henry, who 
lost his life by an accident. Since 1875 the sons of both William 
and Henry have at various times acquired an interest in the 
business, and continue to carry on the works under the old name. 

Buckholm Mill was the first in the town to be lighted by 
electricity, the installation having been fitted up by Edison & Co. 
of New York in 1884 The works have been largely increased at 
various dates, especially in 1884, when a weaving shed covering 
between six and seven thousand square yards was erected in 
Kilnknowe Haugh, an iron bridge connecting the various 
portions of the works on either side of the Gala. 

Alexander Laing Brown, the senior partner, represented the 
Border Burghs, as a supporter of Mr Gladstone, between 1886 
and 1890. 



384 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The Bristol Spinning Mill. 

This building was erected in 1885 by Roberts, Dobson, & 
Co. It came into the market in 1895 and was acquired by the 
firm of William Roberts & Co., owners of the Victoria and 
Waulkmillhead Mills. 

Wheatlands Mill. 

This factory is one of the latest erections of its kind in the 
town, having been built in 1866 by Arthur Dickson, on a site 
called Wheatlands, from which it derives its name. 

Mr Dickson was a native of Peebles, where his father, John 
Dickson, carried on the manufacture of woollen cloth in the 
Peebles Waulk Mill, becoming a member of the Galashiels 
Manufacturers* Corporation in 181 2. To him belongs the 
honour of sending from Peebles in 1829 the first consignment of 
Scotch tweeds to the London market. 

In 1834 he removed to Stow and fitted up the Stow mill 
with new machinery, where he commenced to manufacture Scotch 
tweeds from foreign wool with great success. 

In 1849 Arthur Dickson came to Galashiels and joined the 
firm of George Paterson & Co., Huddersfield Mill, where he 
remained till 1857. At that date he resigned connection with 
that firm and entered into partnership with David Dobbie, from 
Fifeshire, carrying on business in the Waulkmillhead Mill, the 
firm being known as Dickson, Dobbie, & Co. This connection 
was maintained till 1865 when a dissolution took place, and in 
the following year Mr Dickson erected the original portion of 
Wheatlands Mill, to which large extensions have been made. 

In the earlier years of the municipal history of the town Mr 
Dickson took a part in civic affairs. He served for some time 
as a Commissioner of Police, and in that capacity was the first 
who publicly advocated the necessity of procuring a fire engine 
for the burgh. He also took a warm interest in the cause of 
education previous to the passing of the Education Act, and was 
one of a very small minority in the town who strenuously 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



385 



I 



advocated the claims of the Caledonian Railway Company when 
the line between Peebles and Galashiels was first mooted. 

Mr Dickson retired from business in 1882, and died in 1890. 
Since the date of his retirement from active life, the business has 
been carried on by his sons under the old style of Arthur 
Dickson & Company, 

Tweed Mill. 

The original portion of this mill was erected in 1852 by 
Peter and Robert Sanderson, grandsons of Alexander Sanderson 
(the common ancestor of the firms of P. & R. Sanderson and 
R. & A. Sanderson & Co.) who manufactured woollen goods 
at Melrose, and was a member of the Manufacturers* Corporation 
in 1790. Leaving Melrose, he went to Newcastleton, thence to 
Innerleithen, where he carried on the manufacture of woollen 
cloth, assisted by his three sons, Robert, James, and Alexander. 
The family next removed to Galashiels, and carried on business 
in Wilderhaugh Mill. Alexander Sanderson died in 1828. 

Previous to that event, James Sanderson, the second son, 
had started business on his own account, and in premises in 
Bridge Street employed a few hand looms in the production of 
tartans, which were in great demand at that period. In course 
of time he rented some machinery, in the first instance at 
Wilderhaugh, and afterwards at Gala Mill, where he produced 
yarns for hosiery and other purposes from about 1835 to 1841. 

In 1 84 1, in connection with John Sibbald, an Edinburgh 
merchant, he erected Abbot's Mill, the business being carried 
on under the name of Sanderson & Sibbald. This continued 
till 1845, when James Sanderson died, his place in the firm being 
filled by his son Peter till the partnership wa^ dissolved in 1851. 
At that date Mr Sibbald acquired the business, and in the 
following year the two brothers, Peter and Robert Sanderson, 
erected the first portion of Tweed Mill, where they traded under 
the style of P. & R. Sanderson. 

In 1892 the partnership was dissolved, and the works were 
acquired by Robert Sanderson, who, in connection with three of 

V 



386 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

his sons, still carries on the business under the old designation. 
At the time when Tweed Mill was erected the available 
power of the Galashiels Mill dam was fully taken up. In 
these circumstances it became necessary to rely entirely on 
steam as the motive power. This was the first factory in the 
town driven by steam alone. At that date the expense of fuel 
was considered to be a great barrier to success. One worthy 
manufacturer, who had removed to another locality in order to 
obtain sufficient water power, informed the partners '*that he 
could easily afford to keep a carriage and pair on the difference 
alone between the relative cost of water and their steam power." 
The plan for this factory was prepared by Randolph, Elder, & 
Co., of Glasgow, who also fitted up the shafting in the original 
portion of the works. 

Waukrigg Mill. 

Formerly this factory was known as Tweed Place Mill, 
and was erected in 1866 by James Mitchell, where he carried on 
the weaving and finishing of woollen cloth for the succeeding 
twenty-four years under the designation of James Mitchell & Co. 

In 1890 it came into the market, and was acquired by James 
and John Cochrane Dorward, who erected an additional building 
for the accommodation of carding and spinning machinery. 
At that time the style was changed to Waukrigg Mill with 
the view of perpetuating the ancient name of the adjoining 
locality. 

Previous to commencing on their own account, Messrs 
Dorward had attained to partnerships in the firm of J. & W. 
Cochrane, Mid Mill, which was founded by their great-grand- 
father, Adam Cochrane, who was Deacon of the Manufacturers' 
Corporation in 1788. 

COMELYBANK MiLL. 

This factory was erected in 1852 by Andrew & Richard 
Watson, on a site known as the Brewery Haugh, from its being 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 387 

cultivated by Mr Haldane, brewer, Low Buckholmside. The 
designation of the factory was derived from its proximity to a 
row of houses called Comelybank, which existed in the neigh- 
bourhood previous to the formation of the North British Railway. 

In 1858 the factory passed into the hands of Thomas 
Bogue, of Berwick, and for the subsequent twenty-two years was 
successively occupied by Watson & Bogue, Bogue & Co., and 
Bogue, Lees, & Co. In 1880 it was acquired by James Sander- 
son of Woodlands, the sole representative of the firm of Hugh 
Sanderson & Son. 

Mr Sanderson is the great-grandson of Hugh Sanderson, 
one of the original owners of Botany Mill, who is first mentioned 
in the history of the trade in 1779 as being at that date Deacon 
of the Dyers, and again in 1794 when he filled a similar office in 
the Manufacturers' Corporation. On account of his skill in 
indigo dyeing he was known in his time as '^ Blue Hugh.'' 

The firm of Hugh Sanderson & Son originally occupied 
Wilderhaugh, and subsequently Rosebank and Deanbank Mills. 
On acquiring Comelybank Mill, they remodelled and enlarged it. 
Since that time it has been repeatedly extended, special provision 
being made for the manufacture of fine worsted goods, for the 
production of which this firm enjoys a reputation of the highest 
order. 

In 1895 electric light was introduced into the works, 
the installation being capable of affording an ample supply for 
the recently enlarged mansion house of Woodlands — the first 
instance of its use in illuminating a dwelling-house in town — the 
current being conveyed to the house by an underground cable. 

In 1896 an iron bridge for the convenience of the employees 
was thrown over the Gala, to replace the timber structure that 
had been carried away by the great flood in 1891. 

Galabank Mill. 

The origmal portion of this mill was erected in 18 18 by 
Richard Lees, manufacturer, Buckholmside. The site is 
described as *Mying near the foot of the haugh called the Wilder- 



388 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

haugh, on the north side of the dam, nearly opposite George 
Mercer's new house/' Upon this ground Richard Lees bound 
himself to erect **a mill and machinery house and waulk mill, 
forty-two feet long, twenty-eight feet wide, and twenty-five feet 
high, to be covered with slates, for the purpose of carrying on a 
woollen manufactory." 

Richard Lees was the son of John Lees, manufacturer and 
dyer at Buckholmside, one of the constitutors of the Manu- 
facturers' Corporation, who acquired a title for a feu in that 
village from Mr Pringle of Torwoodlee in 1784, upon which he 
had previously erected a factory and dwelling-house. 

John Lees died in 1807, and was succeeded by his son 
Richard, who in 1793 combined with others in the erection 
of the original portion of the Mid Mill. In 1779 he procured 
an extension of his feu at Buckholmside, upon which he 
erected additional buildings. Possibly for the want of suit- 
able ground for further extension in that locality, he erected 
Galabank Mill in 1818, and continued to carry on his business 
at both places. To this circumstance was owing the erection of 
the celebrated wire bridge over Gala, in order to admit of easy 
and convenient access to both of the works. 

In contemporary documents Richard Lees is described as 
one of the best-known pioneers of the woollen trade in Gala- 
shiels, having in that relation occupied a prominent position in 
the early years of its history. He appears to have been a public- 
spirited man of exceptional energy and ability. In 1788 he 
petitioned the Board of Trustees for Manufactures in Scotland 
for assistance to enable him to visit England for the purpose of 
acquiring a better knowledge of the woollen trade, so that 
any information he might acquire should be utilised for the 
public benefit. He also seems to have been fully alive to the 
necessity of procuring machinery of the most improved type, 
and in several instances introduced such machines into Scotland. 
In the records of the Board of Trustees his name frequently 
occurs; he was esteemed by them as a ''man of skill" whom 
they were wont to consult regarding the merits of new or 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 389 

improved machinery, he having been repeatedly requested to 
examine and report upon such in various parts of Scotland, 
Early in the present century he attained a leading position in the 
Scottish woollen trade, having for a number of years been 
successful in carrying off first honours in the annual competitions 
held in Edinburgh for premiums offered by the Board of Trustees. 

At a show held in London in 18 16 the Right Honourable 
Lord Somerville of The Pavilion offered a prize consisting of a 
silver cup for *'the best piece of cloth manufactured from Merino 
and British wool.*' Richard Lees was the successful competitor, 
and the cup is now in the possession of his grandson, Richard 
Lees, Town Clerk of Galashiels. 

In addition to the manufacture of cloth, Mr Lees also devoted 
his attention to agriculture, being for a period tenant of the 
farm of Hemphaugh. He was a man of taste and varied 
accomplishments. His garden at Buckholmside was quite a 
show place, and the famous wire bridge which he erected in its 
vicinity attracted visitors from all quarters. He also played the 
bagpipes, to which instrument he was probably attracted 
by the fact of his possessing the identical pipes which had 
belonged to ''Bonnie Prince Charlie.'' These pipes were of 
French manufacture of the time of Louis XIV. They were 
purchased at the sale of the effects of Cardinal York, brother of 
Prince Charles Edward Stuart, at his villa of Frascati near Rome, 
after the Cardinal's decease, and were presented to Mr Lees. 

In a manuscript left by Mr Lees reference is made to the 
history of the pipes, and it is stated, on the authority of the 
Prince's body servant, that for the last five years of his life the 
Prince spent the greater part of his time playing on the pipes in 
question. They are now in the Antiquarian Museum in 
Edinburgh, having been presented to that institution by Mr 
Lees's grand-daughter, Mrs Stewart of Sweethope, Inveresk. 

There is no portrait of Mr Lees extant, but, from all 
accounts, he was of a kindly, genial, and hospitable nature, 
which characteristics are thus referred to by Andrew Scott, the 
Bowden poet, — 



390 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

** O my kind friend, whose social jokes, 
And gentle manners frank and free. 
The muse of Bowden thus invokes 
To waft an orra lay to thee." 

Richard Lees died in 1838, and was succeeded by two of 
his sons, who maintained the credit of the firm for the high 
quality of their goods, the business being carried on under the 
style of Robert & George Lees. Although this firm did not 
initiate the tartan trade, they were the foremost in fostering and 
developing the production of fine tartans for ladies' use, first as 
mantles for out-door wear and afterwards as robes for the 
drawing-room. 

In 1837 the feu was extended and a large addition made to 
the works, in the lower flat of which, previous to the introduction 
of the machinery, a dinner and ball were held in honour of the 
accession of Queen Victoria. 

Robert Lees retired from business in 1856 and continued to 
reside at his villa of Leabrae, which was one of the first 
examples of this class of suburban residences in the immediate 
neighbourhood of the town. Here he died in 1888 in the eighty- 
second year of his age. 

After the retirement of Robert, the business was carried on 
by George Lees on his own account until 1865, when, having 
assumed one of his sons as a partner, the name of the firm was 
changed to George Lees & Company. Mr Lees died in 1879 
at the age of seventy-six, and the business was continued by 
his sons James and John, who carry on the works under the 
old name. 

WiLDERBANK MiLL. 

At first the name of this factory was Wilderhaugh Burn 
Mill, — evidently derived from a small stream which at one 
time flowed through the ground attached to it. The original 
building was sixty-five feet long, twenty-seven feet wide, and 
sixteen feet high in the side walls. The actual date of its erection 
is unknown, the earliest known reference to it being in 1780, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 391 

when it was occupied by ^'George Mercer, clothier, Wilder- 
haugh, near Galashiels." 

The terms upon which the site was held were not recorded till 
the year 1800, when a tack for ninety-nine years was obtained, 
which contained provision for a renewal at the expiry of that 
time. In the event of this being refused, the superior was bound 
to take over the buildings at mutual valuation. The conditions 
of the tack were akin to those of a similar nature in the town, 
and are of interest as they afford information regarding the terms 
imposed upon feuars on the Gala estate a century ago. 

The tenant was restricted from using the buildings for 
any purpose except a woollen factory or dwelling-house, and, 
in the latter event, an additional sum of fifteen shillings had 
to be paid. The buildings were to be maintained wind and 
water tight, and, in common with those using the dam, 
the cauld at the damhead had to be kept in proper repair, and 
the dam ''redd" or cleaned at their mutual expense. In the event 
of any portion of the buildings being used as a dwelling-house, 
the tenants were bound to grind all their corn, malt, and wheat at 
the Galashiels Mill, paying the ordinary sequels and multures. 
They were also obliged to purchase all their *'meal from the said 
mill, provided it could be obtained as good and cheap as it could be 
had in the Galashiels market." The tenant was also restricted 
from '^carrying out of the baronie any dung or fulzie collected in 
or about the premises under the penalty of ten shillings for each 
cart load." 

At what time George Mercer came to Galashiels cannot 
now be determined, but previous to that event he tenanted the 
corn and waulkmill which at one time existed at Elwand foot. 
He is first mentioned in connection with the woollen trade in 1775, 
when he received a woad vat from the Board of Trustees, his son 
George being also taught to dye woad at the expense of the 
Board. His brother Adam was tenant in the farm of Bow on 
Gala Water, and in 1791 qualified himself for admission into the 
Manufacturers' Corporation by subscribing one guinea toward 
the fund for the erection of the Cloth Hall. 



392 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The introduction of carding machinery by George Mercer 
marked an important epoch in the history of the woollen trade 
of the town, and required an addition to the existing waulkmill 
and willow-house. The new building measured twenty-seven feet 
long, twenty-four feet wide, and sixteen feet high in the side 
walls, and was the first factory in Scotland in which woollen 
yarn was produced by machinery impelled by water power. 

As the family of George Mercer grew up they were 
assumed as partners, the firm being carried on as George Mercer 
& Sons. During the closing years of the last, and the earlier 
years of the present century, this firm showed much enterprise, 
being the first in the village to compete for the premiums offered 
by the Board of Trustees for the best quality of woollen cloth. 

In 1811 the factory was destroyed by fire, and, being 
insured for ;^6oo only, the firm would have Qollapsed but for 
the ready help of their friends and neighbours, who subscribed 
;^500, which enabled them to tide over their difficulties. 
Amongst the local contributors were John Paterson, writer, 
who subscribed ;^2o; Sanderson & Paterson, builders, £2^] 
John Aimers, millwright, £30; John Hislop, smith, ;^20; 
Frank Stevenson, miller, £20; Richard Lees, clothier, ;^2o; 
William & Simon Bathgate, millwrights, Buckholmside, ^10; 
James Watson, hosier, £20. In addition, sums ranging from 
;^io to jC^o were received from Melrose, Selkirk, Jedburgh, 
Edinburgh, and London. In 1819 another fire occurred, which 
once more destroyed the factory. It was again rebuilt, and in 
the following year George Mercer, jun., died, and was succeeded 
by his son Thomas, under whose management the firm fell from 
the leading position it formerly occupied. In 1827 a small 
piece of additional ground was obtained, upon which was erected 
a *^ slated spinning house of two stories.'* 

After the death of Thomas Mercer, which occurred in 1830, 
the factory came into the hands of trustees, by whom it was 
rented to the following amongst others, viz. : — Thomas & George 
Clapperton, Metcalf & Ballantyne, Robert Walker & Sons, 
and Robert Frier. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 393 

In 1862 the building was acquired by William Brown, who 
demolished the old place and erected a new factory, the old name 
being changed to Wilderbank, in consequence of the difficulty 
Englishmen had in pronouncing Wilderhaugh. 

The new proprietor was born at Foulshiels, Yarrow, in the 
same cottage where Mungo Park first saw light, the parents of 
both residing *^but and ben.*' When a young lad he came to 
Galashiels as an apprentice to James Sime, senior, in order to 
learn the woollen manufacture, his indenture in this relation 
having been already given in the history of the Manufacturers' 
Corporation. In 1844 Mr Brown started business in Ladhope 
Mill in connection with Frank Inglis, the firm being known as 
Inglis & Brown. When Mr Inglis died, his son-in-law, James 
Dalziel, occupied his place till 1862, when the firm was dissolved. 
As soon as Wilderbank Mill was ready for occupation, Mr Brown 
was joined by James Shaw from Glasgow, this connection 
being maintained for twelve years, when Mr Shaw retired in 
1874. The firm is now carried on by Andrew, James R. and 
Gideon Brown under the style of William Brown & Sons. 

Mr Brown, senior, died in 1894 in his eighty-fifth year, 
being the last survivor of what may be styled the second 
generation of Galashiels manufacturers. 



Deanbank Mill. 

This building was erected by Robert Hall, builder, and 
took its name from the field upon which Kirkbrae now stands, 
which was known as the Deanpark. Originally it was used for 
the storage of wool, and for hand-loom weaving, being in 
this connection occupied by Henry Sanderson, Robert Frier, 
and others. Latterly, along with a portion of Rosebank Mill, 
it was occupied by Hugh Sanderson, at whose death in 
1863 the tenancy was continued by his son, James, now of 
Comelybank Mill, who introduced steam power, and had the 
weaving sheds behind Hall Street erected, where he carried on 
power-loom weaving, dyeing, and finishing. At the expiry of 



394 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

his lease in 1882 it was tenanted by Gibson & Lumgair, then 
just commencing business. Some time afterwards they found 
it necessary to acquire additional accommodation for looms at 
the Brewery Buildings, Buckholmside. They also bought Old 
Ladhope Free Church, which they fitted up and occupied as office 
and warehouse, till they removed from Galashiels in 1894, to 
their new factory at Selkirk, called St Mary's Mills. 

RosEBANK Mill. 

This mill was built in 1805 by David & William Thomson, 
clothiers in Darling's Haugh, sons of William Thomson, one of 
the original owners of Botany Mill. 

The feu is described as lying on the south side of the Weir 
Haugh, and opposite the Linn Burn, from which it derived its 
original name of the Linnburn Mill. In course of time this 
name fell into desuetude, and it became known as '* Thomson's 
Mill," from the name of the proprietors. After that family 
ceased to have connection with it, the present name of Rose- 
bank arose, having reference, in all probability, to the profusion 
of wild roses that grew on the adjacent bank. 

In 18 14 Messrs Thomson introduced spinning mules, and 
these were the first machines of the kind in the town. They 
carried on business till 1825, when the partnership was dissolved, 
in connection with which a dispute took place regarding the 
respective shares of the partners, and a lawsuit was entered 
upon in the Court of Session. Eventually, a settlement was 
effected by arbitration in 1836, the arbiters being Robert Gill, 
George Paterson, and James Sime, jun., who found David 
Thomson entitled to a sum amounting to about ;^400, on pay- 
ment of which he assigned his share of the tack, buildings, and 
machinery to his brother William. 

After obtaining possession of the factory, it would appear 
that William Thomson ceased to carry on the trade, as in 1837 
it was occupied by Gilbert Dalgliesh, James Rutherford, and 
Robert Frier. From that date up to 1879 various firms 
occupied the premises besides the above, amongst whom were 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 395 

Henry Monteith, T. & G. Clapperton, Hugh Sanderson, 
William Brown & Sons, and Kemp & Walker, dyers. In 1845 
William Thomson died, and the property was managed by 
trustees till 1863, when it was sold to John Paterson of Hawick. 
In 1876 it again came into the market, and was acquired by 
A. Herbertson & Son, builders. 

In 1882 the firm of Keddie, Gordon, & Co. commenced 
business in Rosebank Mill. Mr Keddie was a native of 
Jedburgh. Mr Gordon came to Galashiels from Banffshire in 
1867. In 1883 a considerable addition was made to the 
property, which was tenanted by Robertson & Blake, to which 
they gave the name of Eildon Mill. This firm remained 
till 1885, when they were succeeded by Boyd, Robertson, & Co., 
who removed to Selkirk in 1887. The next tenant was 
Archibald Colquhoun, who occupied the premises till 1894, when 
he removed to Innerleithen, after which the firm of Keddie, 
Gordon, & Co. acquired the whole premises. Mr Keddie 
retired in 1893, and the business is carried on under the old 
name by Mr Gordon. 

Ladhope Mill. 

This mill was commenced in 1793 by Robert Walker, 
''dyster," the site at that time being called the Boglehole Park, 
belonging to Mr Pringle of Torwoodlee. The feu duty was 
twelve shillings and sixpence per annum, and the superior 
undertook to relieve the tenant from all charges for minister's 
stipend, schoolmaster's salary, and land tax. Buildings at that 
period must have been erected in a very primitive manner, as the 
feuar had the privilege of cutting and carting from Buckholm Hill 
as many ^^ divots'* as might be required to cover the *' rigging 
and skews" of the buildings about to be erected. 

Buckholmside dam had been formed in 1788 to supply power 
for a waulkmill built by Mr Pringle of Torwoodlee. This mill 
was tenanted by James Walker, and the dam again joined the 
Gala at the mouth of Ladhope Burn. It was now lengthened to 
provide power for the new mill, the owner of which possessed a 



396 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

right-of-way over the other feus through which it flowed for 
the purpose of '' redding the dam/' he being also liable for one 
third of the expense of maintaining the cauld. 

In 1811 the firm of Robert Walker & Sons fell into 
difiiculties, and the mill, machinery, and dwelling*house were 
sold in behoof of their creditors to George Lindsay of Earlston 
for the sum of jC^S^. 

After Mr Lindsay's death, which occurred in 1834, ^^^ trustees 
disposed of the property to the adjoining feuars, John Sanderson 
and William Paterson, builders, who a few years afterwards were 
succeeded by their sons William Sanderson and Adam Paterson. 

During the period the mill was in the hands of Mr Lindsay 
and Sanderson & Paterson, it was rented to a number of small 
manufacturers whose businesses at that time were not of such 
magnitude as warranted them erecting buildings for themselves. 
Among these were Ballantyne & Tait, Inglis & Paterson, 
Inglis & Brown, Brown & Dalziel, Robert Paterson, Waddel & 
TurnbuU, Thomas Davidson, and Joshua Wood & Sons. 

In 1 83 1 a flood carried away the Galashiels dam-head, 
which at that time occupied a position where Plumtreehall 
Bridge crosses the Gala. In place of re-erecting it upon the old 
site it was removed further up the stream to its present position, 
and built higher than it was formerly. This alteration in height 
seriously interfered with the quantity of water that flowed down 
the Buckholmside dam, and, failing redress, Sanderson & 
Paterson raised an action in the Court of Session for the 
purpose of having the cauld lowered to its original level. The 
dispute was at length settled by arbitration in 1856, and the weir 
was lowered to the extent of three inches. 

In consequence of the insufficient supply of water, Sander- 
son & Paterson in 1836 procured an engine of 25 horse- 
power, — the first in the town used for driving woollen machin- 
ery. It was also in this mill that the first wool-scouring, 
drying, burring, milling and tentering machines of modern con- 
struction were erected, as also scribbling machinery having 
metal cylinders. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 397 

In 1847 William Sanderson purchased the whole property, 
where he carried on the business of spinning till 1864, when 
Laidlaw & Fairgrieve became tenants, and were so till 
1868, when they acquired the property, carrying on business as 
yarn spinners under the name of Laidlaw & Fairgrieve. 

Mr Laidlaw was a native of Galashiels, and learned his 
business with the firm of J. & W. Cochrane. When the gold 
fever broke out, he went to California, and from there to 
Melbourne, returning to Galashiels in 1864. Mr Fairgrieve 
is also a native of Galashiels, the name being one of the oldest 
in the town, and previous to starting business on his own 
account he had acted as manager to William Sanderson, in Lad- 
hope Mill. 

Mr Laidlaw died in 1880, and when the copartnery ter- 
minated in 1885 the works were acquired by Mr . Fairgrieve, 
who, in connection with his two sons, Thomas and Andrew, 
continues to carry on the business under the old name of 
Laidlaw & Fairgrieve. 

Botany Mill. 

This mill was originally known as the Weirhaugh Mill, 
and was erected in 1797 by Hugh Sanderson, clothier, and 
Thomas Clapperton, weaver, in Galashiels; James Sime, 
clothier, in Darling's Haugh; and William Thomson, clothier, 
in the Channel. 

At what date or for what reason the name of the factory 
was changed to Botany is unknown, but it is probable that the 
name arose from its being the first mill in the town in which 
Botany wool was used. 

The original erection consisted of a building forty feet 
long, eighteen feet wide, and eighteen feet high; under its roof 
these four individuals found accommodation to carry on the 
fulling and probably the finishing processes of their respective 
businesses. 

The site was held on a ninety-nine years tack, with the 



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398 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

stipulation that the building should not be converted into a 
flour, barley, or meal mill. 

In 1810 William Thomson disposed of his share of the 
property to the three remaining proprietors, and in 1825 Hugh 
Sanderson assigned his interest to his son, Henry Sanderson, 
who carried on business in Botany Mill till he erected Buckholm 
Mill in 1846. 

In 1829 an addition was built, measuring fifty-seven and 
a half feet long, twenty-eight feet wide, and four stories high, 
being the first instalment of the large additions that have been 
made to the works at various dates. In the same year Thomas 
Clapperton was under the necessity of assigning his share of the 
buildings to George Craig, the Baron Bailie, for behoof of his 
creditors. In 1831 this share was acquired by Robert Gill, and 
thus originated the once well-known firm of Gill, Sime, & Co. 

In 1841 Robert Gill assigned his interest in the business to 
his son Robert, who in 1847 disposed of it to James Sime, 
who also in 1856 acquired the share belonging to Henry 
Sanderson, and was thus left sole proprietor. Mr Sime carried 
on the business in connection with his son William under the 
style of James Sime & Son till 1866, when he assumed William 
A. Plummer Sanderson as partner, the firm being afterwards 
known as Sime, Sanderson, & Co. Mr Sanderson is a native of 
Dalkeith, having learned the business in the firm of J. & H. 
Brown & Co., Selkirk. In 1874 Mr Sime died, and the property 
came into the possession of his son William and Mr Sanderson. 

In 1870 a fire occurred in the works which caused 
damage to the extent of ;^io,ooo. In 1879 the firm introduced 
circular knitting frames for the manufacture of a style of cloth 
for gentlemen's wear, but, owing to the difficulty of procuring 
skilled labour, the machines were discarded. 

In 1885 William Sime died, and the works were acquired by 
Mr Sanderson, the sole remaining partner, who, assisted by his 
two sons, William Plummer Sanderson and George Thomson 
Sanderson, still continues to carry on the business under the old 
style of Sime, Sanderson, & Co, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The Waulkmillhead Mill. 

This erection was originally termed the Upper \^ 
and occupies the site of one of the three waulkmills whi i 
previous to 1581. 

It was built in 1802 by John Roberts (who was ( 1 
constitutors of the Manufacturers' Corporation), George 
James Johnstone, clothiers, Galashiels; and John Lees, ; 
in the Channel. The original building measured fort> : 
long, twenty-eight feet wide, and twenty feet high in I 
walls, the tack being for the usual term of ninety-nine 1 
an annual payment of ^4, the tenant being bound b) 
conditions as those already described. 

The first change occurred in 18 10, when George 
disposed of his share of the property to George Robert 
1833 transferred it to William Roberts. 

In 1813 James Johnstone disposed of his share to ' 
Roberts, and in 1831 James Bathgate acquired the shai ! 
by John Lees, and in 1836 sold it to William Roberts, 1 
became owner of three-fourths of the property. In 
building was nearly destroyed by fire. 

In 1857 William Roberts died, and was succeedei 
sons John, Hugh, William and Henry. 

In 1815 John Roberts, one of the original owners, ^ 
in 1825, assigned his one-fourth share to his son Job 
dying in 1868, left his interest in the factory to his sc 
Tait Roberts, who in 1885 sold it to Henry Roberts, 
also acquired the shares belonging to his brothers H\ 
William, both having died in 1879. 

In 1891 Henry Roberts died, and in 1896 his trust 
the factory to his nephews, JiVilliam H. and Hugh Robei 
of Hugh Roberts, one of the former proprietors. 

Victoria Mill. 

The original feu upon which this factory is erected b 
to George Blaikie, formerly proprietor of Langhaugh, 



400 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

other portions of ground on the south side of the Gala comprised 
in the Chingle or Channel. 

The feu was acquired in 1837 ^Y William Roberts, George 
Roberts, and Robert Gill, and for the succeeding sixteen years 
was occupied as a tentering and drying ground. Since that time 
additional ground has been acquired from Mr Scott of Gala in 
order to provide for the expansion of the works. 

In 1845 George Roberts assigned his interest in the feu to 
William Roberts, who also in the following year acquired the 
remaining portion belonging to Robert Gill. 

In 1853 the original portion of the works was built by 
William Roberts, to which he gave the name of Victoria Mill, 
probably on account of the site having been procured in the 
year in which Queen Victoria ascended the throne. 

In 1857 William Roberts died, and, as has been said, was 
succeeded by his four sons, John, Hugh, William, and Henry. 

In 1863 John Roberts died, and was succeeded by his son 
John Tait Roberts, who in 1885 sold his interest in the factory 
to Henry Roberts, who had previously acquired the shares which 
belonged to his deceased brothers, thus becoming sole proprietor. 
The business was carried on by Henry Roberts till his death, 
which occurred in 1891, and afterwards by his trustees till 1896, 
when the works were acquired by his nephews, William H. and 
Hugh Roberts, who carry on the business at Victoria Mill, 
Waulkmillhead, and Bristol Spinning Mill under the style of 
William Roberts & Company. 

The Mid Mill. 

This factory was originally known as the Mid Waulkmill, 
and was built in 1793 by David Grieve, Adam Cochrane, and 
Robert Gill, manufacturers in Galashiels, and Richard Lees, 
manufacturer, Buckholmside. The original building was forty 
feet long, twenty-nine feet wide, and sixteen feet high in the side 
walls. It occupies the site of one of the three ancient waulk- 
mills which were in existence in 1581, but regarding their origin 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 401 

history is silent. From the terms of the tack it would appear 
that a building already existed upon the ground, which probably 
may have been erected by one or other of the Pringles of 
Galashiels. 

The original feu was held on a ninety-nine years' tack, 
subject to the usual conditions, with the addition that if the 
building was allowed to stand unoccupied, or the rent was not 
paid for the space of three years, the lease was to be considered 
void, and the buildings were to revert to the superior. 

The first change occurred in 1810, when David Grieve dis- 
posed of his share of the factory to the three remaining 
proprietors. In 1814 Robert Gill assigned his interest in the 
building to his son Robert, who in 1831 sold it to John, Walter, 
and Archibald Cochrane. They had succeeded their father, Adam 
Cochrane, whose death occurred in 18 18. In 183 1 the remaining 
share was acquired from Richard Lees for the sum of ;^333, los, 
the mill then passed into the hands of the Messrs Cochrane. In 
1833 Archibald Cochrane disposed of his share of the buildings 
to his two brothers. This firm was the first in the town to 
introduce power-looms and self-acting mules, and was also 
successful in greatly improving the type of condenser patented 
by Houldsworth of Glasgow and Wilson of Earlston. 

In 1850 Walter Cochrane died, and was succeeded in the 
first instance by his son, Adam Lees Cochrane, and afterwards 
by Archibald Cochrane, in conjunction with whom John Cochrane 
and his son Adam formed the individual members of the firm 
from 1854 to 1866. At the latter date John Cochrane retired, 
and his place in the firm was taken by his son, Kenneth Cochrane. 

In 1857 the firm had acquired a portion of Netherbarns 
Haugh, upon which they commenced to erect Netherdale Mill, 
and in 1866, when the partnership was dissolved, the new factory 
was acquired by Adam Lees, and Archibald, sons of Walter 
Cochrane, while Adam and Kenneth, sons of John Cochrane, 
remained in the Mid Mill. 

In 1890 Kenneth Cochrane retired. In the same year the 
death of Adam Cochrane occurred. 



402 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Mr Cochrane was a thoroughly representative Galashiels 
manufacturer, a genuine Scotsman, possessing a strong individ- 
uality of character, and was a prominent member of the 
Manufacturers' Corporation. It was principally through his 
exertions that the portraits of Dr Douglas (whose memory he 
strongly cherished), Sir Walter Scott, and Major Scott of Gala, 
which adorn the Public Hall, were procured. He was one of 
the unfortunate shareholders in the City of Glasgow Bank, and 
was one of the few who satisfied the claims of the liquidators. 
He took a prominent part in the proceedings of the South of 
Scotland Chamber of Commerce, as president, member of council, 
and ordinary member. In the earlier years of the civic history 
of the town he acted as a Magistrate and Commissioner. His 
love for the Borderland, its legends, ballads, and literature 
generally, was unusually strong; he was a genial, warm-hearted 
man, and had a very exceptional attachment to his native town, 
and warmly cherished its traditions and the memory of its 
departed worthies. 

Since Mr Cochrane's death the firm has been carried on by 
two of his sons, John Adam and Gordon Cochrane, under the 
old designation of J. & W. Cochrane, which has existed 
since 1818. 

During the course of the century that has expired since the 
works were commenced, the original feu has been largely 
extended and covered with buildings, the firm having acquired 
all the available ground in the vicinity. Among the lots that 
have been thus absorbed, one portion was occupied by John 
Bathgate in 1797, and afterwards by Thomas and Andrew 
Clapperton, it having been bought by the Messrs Cochrane in 
1 83 1. Another portion was occupied by George Rae, who 
disposed of it to David Ballantyne, from whom it was acquired 
in 1844. 

Nether Mill. 

This mill was built in 1805 by William Brown, James 
Bathgate, Andrew Clapperton, and William Roberts, clothiers 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 403 

in Galashiels. The feu is described as ^Mying in the Sandy 
Haugh in the vicinity of the site of one of the original waulk- 
mills." The dimensions of the original building, which still 
forms part of the works, is forty-three feet long, twenty-eight 
feet wide, and twenty-two feet high. 

In 1 8 10 Andrew Clapperton borrowed ;^i50 upon the 
security of his share of the property, which was sold by public 
auction in 1816 for j^ 190, the purchaser being William Brown, 
who now became the owner of half the factory. 

In 1836 William Roberts disposed of his interest in the 
building to James Bathgate, who in 1843 acquired the remainder 
from William Brown. 

In 1845 the firm of James Bathgate & Son was represented 
by George and James Bathgate, jun., and in 1866 James dis- 
posed of his share to his brother George, who carried on the 
business under the old name till his death, which occurred in 1868. 

At that date the factory, which had been largely extended, 
was acquired by James Shaw, of the firm of Brown & Shaw, 
Wilderbank Mill, who occupied it till they dissolved partnership 
in 1874. 

Among the various areas of ground which have been secured 
at various dates for the extension of the Nether Mill, one portion 
was formerly occupied by Deacon Walker, who acquired it in 
1824. In 1833 it was sold, and, after passing through 
various hands not connected with the trade, it was purchased by 
James Shaw in 1869. 

When Mr Shaw removed to Nether Mill in 1874 he was 
joined by his brother Walter, and since that date the firm has 
traded under the style of James Shaw & Brothers. 

The Waverley Mill. 

This factory was started in 1886 by J. & W. Roberts for 
the purpose of weaving and finishing woollen cloth. Previous 
to that date the premises had been occupied by the firm of Thomas 



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404 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Aimers & Sons, engineers, who had removed their works to the 
present site adjoining Huddersfield Mill. 

Messrs Roberts learned the business in the Victoria Mill, 
being the sons of John Roberts, one of the former partners in 
that factory, who died in 1863. 



Huddersfield Mill. 

The site of this factory was secured in 18 18 by George 
Paterson, Robert Walker, John Gledhill, and John Fairgrieve. 
The name was given on account of John Gledhill being a 
native of Huddersfield, Yorkshire. 

George Paterson was a son of the Baron Bailie, Thomas 
Paterson, who died in 1813. The name is one of the oldest in 
the town, there being several Patersons mentioned in the rent- 
roll of the barony in 1656, one of whom is designated ''burgis,'' 
and others are entered as following the craft of '^weafer." 

Among those who cherish the traditions connected with the 
early history of the woollen trade in the town the name of Robert 
Walker (*^The Deacon**) is familiar as a household word. He 
appears to have been somewhat of a character, possessing a 
considerable amount of native humour, as a number of amusing 
stories are still extant of which he is the hero. He acquired the 
name '^ Deacon** on account of having occupied that position 
in the Manufacturers* Corporation in 1821, and had the honour 
of presiding over the Michaelmas gathering at which they 
entertained Sir Walter Scott. 

John Gledhill was among the many pioneers of the woollen 
trade in the town who failed to make their mark, and was 
one of the first to succumb during the period of depression which 
occurred about 1825. At that time he was under the necessity of 
assigning his share of the mill for behoof of his creditors, and it 
was acquired by Charles Robson of Berwick. He died in the 
town at an advanced age, and up to the last had a hard struggle 
to eke out a scanty livelihood by selling stocking yarn. 

The crisis in the trade of the town, which culminated in 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 405 

1829, proved disastrous to both Deacon Walker and John 
Fairgrieve. Like many others in the town at that time, they 
were compelled to grant trust deeds. Their interest in the pro- 
perty was acquired by George Blaikie, farmer, Muirhouse, near 
Stow. 

In i860 Adam, son of George Paterson, bought Mr 
Blaikie's share of the mill, and when his father died in 1863, that 
share also came into his possession. In the following year he 
purchased the remainder of the property from the trustees of Mr 
Robson, and became sole proprietor. 

In 1876 Adam Paterson died, and was succeeded by his son 
George, who continues to carry on the business under the style 
of George Paterson & Company. 

Langhaugh Mill. 

This building was erected in 1875 for a spinning mill upon 
a site on the estate of Langhaugh, by George Currie, George 
McDougall, and Charles Scott. They were the first in the district 
to make the loop and knot yarn in mohair, lustres, and silks. 

In 1889 the firm started a retail manufacturer's business for 
woollen cloth, having agents throughout Great Britain and the 
Colonies. 

In 1893 Mr Currie retired, and the business is carried on by 
the two remaining partners under the designation of Currie, 
McDougall, & Scott. 

Gala Mill. 

This factory was erected by Robert Sanderson in 1826 on 
what was described as being up to that time a waste and 
unprofitable piece of ground, for which an annual sum of ;C^4 
was paid; it was held on a ninety-nine years' tack, subject to the 
usual conditions and limitations. Like nearly all the old tacks 
in the town, the tenure of the ground was altered to a feu in 1856. 
The g'round and waterfall were rendered available by a diversion 



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40^ HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

of the Gala from its ang*ular course at the foot of the Scaur to 
its present channel in the centre of the valley. A new cutting 
was made both above and below the factory for the extension 
of the mill dam. The original main building was sixty-five 
feet long, twenty-eight feet wide, and three stories, or twenty- 
eight feet high in the side walls. The power for driving the 
machinery was obtained by means of a water-wheel, eighteen 
feet in diameter and ten feet wide, with a waterfall of eight feet. 

The father of Robert Sanderson was Alexander Sander- 
son, who was born in Galashiels in 1759. He became a 
manufacturer of woollen cloth at Melrose, and received a 
premium in 1786 from the Board of Trustees for Manufactures 
in Scotland for his productions. He was a member of the 
Galashiels Manufacturers' Corporation in 1790. In 1798 he 
removed to Newcastleton, where, for some time, he turned his 
attention to agi'icultural pursuits. In 1805 he removed to 
Innerleithen, and again became engaged in the woollen trade. 
He finally settled in Galashiels in 181 7, and carried on business 
in Wilderhaugh Mill, under the style of Alexander Sanderson 
& Son. He died in 1828. 

As stated previously, Robert Sanderson, the eldest son, 
built Gala Mill in 1826. In 1829 he received a grant of ;^I50 
from the Board of Trustees in consideration of his having fitted 
up woollen machinery between these years at a cost of ;^I034. 
In 1 83 1 he assumed his youngest brother, Alexander, as a 
partner, and the firm was known as R. & A. Sanderson. 
Alexander was well known in his time as an able and enter- 
prising manufacturer, and he died in 1841 at the early age of 
thirty-two years. His place in the business was taken by 
William Paterson, second son of William Paterson, builder, 
Buckholmside, and at that time the style of the firm was altered 
to its present designation of R. & A. Sanderson & Co. Jn 
1 86 1 Robert Sanderson retired from business, and was succeeded 
by his two sons, William Alexander, and Robert, and a few 
years afterwards his youngest son, James, was assumed a partner. 
Robert Sanderson died in 1865. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 407 

William Paterson remained a partner till his death in 1873. 
In 1894 W. A. Sanderson retired, and the business is now 
carried on by Robert and James Sanderson, Thomas Hewat, 
and John Sanderson Hayward. During the period of its 
present designation, the firm has been awarded medals from Jhe 
Commissioners of the exhibitions of London, 1851; Paris, 1867; 
and Paris, 1878. 

As already mentioned, an action was raised in the 
Court of Session by certain riparian proprietors on the Tweed 
to restrain the manufacturers of Galashiels from discharging the 
waste water from the processes of manufacture into the Gala. 
Lengthened litigation ensued, and various attempts were made 
to remove the grievance by rendering the discharges as 
innocuous as possible. The process of purification carried out 
by R. & A. Sanderson & Co. was found to have accomplished 
that result. In 1883 Alexander Crum Brown, Professor of 
Chemistry in the University of Edinburgh, in his official 
capacity as reporter to the Court in the case, stated that the 
arrangements made by R. & A. Sanderson & Co. at Gala Mill 
were sufficient to prevent the pollution of the Tweed from their 
works. On the strength of this report the action was dismissed 
so far as it was directed against them. The greater part of the 
other manufacturers in the town adopted the same system of 
purification, and the action terminated in 1886. A detailed 
account of this process of purification is embodied in a text-book 
on the "Dyeing of Textile Fabrics,'' by J. J. Hummel, F.C.S., 
Yorkshire College, Leeds. 

Abbot's Mill. 

This factory had its origin in 1841, having been built by 
James Sanderson, clothier, Galashiels, and John Sibbald, 
merchant, from Edinburgh. Its name is, in all probability, 
derived from its proximity to Abbotsford. The tack was for 
ninety-nine years, subject to the usual conditions, with the 
addition that the feuars were bound to protect the ground 
against encroachment by the Gala. The original height of the 



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4o8 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

waterfall was five and a half feet, but, under the lease, the 
tenants acquired power to increase it to eight feet, provided the 
interests of mill owners and others were not affected. At that 
date the mill lade ran into the Gala at a point nearer Abbot's 
Mill than it does now, and, owing to the want of declivity when 
the Gala was in flood, the water-wheel was rendered useless by 
backwater. On the firm taking steps to obviate this difficulty 
by lengthening the lade so as to discharge into the Gala at a 
lower level, Mr Bruce of Langlee interfered, and it was only in 
consideration of a money payment that Sanderson & Sibbald 
were permitted to carry out the necessary improvement. 

James Sanderson was the second son of Alexander Sander- 
son, whose career has been already given in the history of 
Tweed and Gala Mills. James carried on business in Abbot's 
Mill till his death, which occurred in 1845, and was succeeded 
by his son, Peter Sanderson. In 1851 the partnership was 
dissolved. Mr Sibbald acquired the property, and continued to 
carry on the business conjointly with his two sons. Latterly 
they resigned business and removed to Edinburgh, and in 1875 
the mill was sold to Alexander Craig Lang, Selkirk, who 
occupied it for the next two years, and then disposed of it to 
Thomas Ovens. 

Mr Ovens is a native of the town, and learned his business 
with his uncles, the Messrs Roberts, in Victoria Mill. After 
acquiring the property, he carried on the spinning and leased 
the weaving department of the works for a time to Blenkhorn, 
Richardson, & Co., Hawick. 

In 1884 Mr Ovens assumed as partner George Hunter, 
from Hawick, the firm now carrying on the woollen trade in all 
its departments under the name of Ovens, Hunter, & Co. 

, Mr Hunter has taken an active part in public affairs, being 
for some time a member of the Town Council and Treasurer to 
the Corporation. In 1891 the inhabitants of the town and 
district were much indebted to him for the public-spirited manner 
in which he successfully resisted the closing of the road leading 
to the Galafoot Bridge. At that date a flood carried away the 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 409 

masonry in course of erection, together with about fifty yards 
of roadway. In order to save the expense of repairing the 
road, the Melrose District Committee of the County Council of 
Roxburghshire resolved to close that portion of the road between 
the end of the proposed bridge and the bridge over the railway, 
midway between the Melrose road and the Gala. Mr Hunter 
brought the matter under the notice of the Galashiels Town 
Council. He also held meetings at various places in the locality 
at which resolutions were passed protesting against the threat- 
ened action, and, at a meeting of the County Council held at 
Jedburgh, he presented a numerously-signed petition against the 
closing of the road in question. The decision of the Melrose 
Committee was confirmed, and statutory notice was given 
intimating the closing of the road. Meantime the Corporation 
for the Burgh had ascertained that they were powerless to inter- 
fere, owing to the road in dispute being beyond their jurisdiction. 
Having secured the co-operation of the trustees on the Langlee 
estate, Mr Hunter appealed to the SheriflF-Substitute, requesting 
to be heard on the merits of the case. This was refused, and a 
decision was given in favour of the County Council. An appeal 
was then made to the SheriflF-Principal, who held that his 
substitute had acted wrongly in refusing to hear Mr Hunter, and 
decided to hear the case himself. Against this action of the 
Sheriff the County Council appealed to the Court of Session, 
who decided in their favour. The case was then carried 
to the Inner House, who reversed the former decision, and 
strongly animadverted upon the conduct of the County Council 
for their action. This decision led to a -mutual arrangement, 
whereby the County Council agreed to re-open the road, pay 
^150 towards the cost of the bridge, contribute one-half of the 
cost of its maintenance, and pay all the judicial expenses of the 
appellants. Afterwards, at a meeting of the Galashiels Town 
Council, Mr Hunter was publicly thanked for his spirited and 
successful efforts on behalf of the community, a sum of ^30 
being voted as a contribution towards the extra-judicial expenses 
incurred by him in defence of the public rights. 



4IO HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Netherdale Mill. 

This factory, with its tasteful surroundings, is the most 
imposing structure of its kind in the town, and, from its 
proximity to the Waverley route of the North British Railway, 
is eminently calculated to impress travellers with the magni- 
tude and importance of the tweed trade, and the favourable 
conditions under which those engaged in it pursue their several 
avocations. 

This building was erected by J. & W. Cochrane in 
1857, upon a feu of thirty acres situated in Netherbarns Haugh. 
When the firm was dissolved in 1866, Netherdale Mill was 
acquired by Adam Lees Cochrane and Archibald Cochrane. 
Sometime afterwards Walter Cochrane was assumed as a partner, 
the business being carried on under the designation of Adam L. 
Cochrane & Brothers. This arrangement continued till 1890, 
when the firm was converted into a limited liability company, 
the directors being Adam L. Cochrane, Archibald Cochrane, 
Walter Cochrane, and William Rodger; John Arnott acting 
as secretary. 

The original portion of the works was built by the firm of 
R. & A. Stirling at an estimated cost of ;^io,400. Since that 
time up to 1896 the firm have expended upon the buildings, 
machinery, and plant considerably over ;^ioo,ooo. 

At the time the factory was commenced the Tweed Road 
was the only one in its vicinity suitable for vehicular traffic, 
and was extremely inconvenient. To obviate the difficulty, 
the firm formed the present road between Abbot's Mill and 
Netherdale, along the side of what was known as the Dark 
Heugh, this road being still maintained at their expense. 
In continuation of this approach, they also formed and main- 
tain the footpath by the side of the Gala between the end of 
Waverley Place and the Railway Bridge. This route is largely 
taken advantage of by the community, being in a direct 
line to the new bridge over the Gala, giving access to the 
Melrose Road and to the Tweed in the neighbourhood of 
Abbotsford. A siding has also been constructed, connecting 




HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 411 

the mill with the Selkirk branch of the North British Railway. 
It was in this factory that the first self-acting mules in the 
town were erected in 1857, when the building was in course of 
construction, temporary steam-power then being improvised. 

In addition to the foregoing list, which comprises all the 
factories in the town driven by power, there are a number ot 
other places where the manufacture of cloth is carried on, but on 
a much smaller scale. These manufacturers purchase their 
yarn from the spinner, and employ hand looms to convert it into 
cloth, the goods being finished by others who make a specialty 
of this branch of the business. The names of these firms are as 
follows, — The Abbotsford Manufacturing Co., Chisholm & Co., 
Clark Brothers, G. Anderson, Peter Anderson, W. Ballantyne, 
A. Christie, C. Foster & Son, James Graham, William Hunter, 
R. Lees, Thomas McCrirrick, P. McLaren, Thomas Park, 
R. Scott, and Thomas Wood. 

The following firms devote their attention to dyeing wool 
and yarn for the trade generally, viz. : — 

Victoria Dye Works. 

These works had their origin at Rosebank Mill about 1858, 
being owned by James Brownlee. When the Gas Company 
removed to Gala Foot he acquired their old premises in Paton 
Street, to which he gave the name of the Victoria Dye Works, 
where he still continues to carry on the business. 

Plumtree Dyeing and Finishing Works. 

The original partners in this firm were John Gray and 
Andrew Ballantyne, who started business in Nether Mill in 1869. 
In 1870 they built Plumtree Dye Works, a portion of the building 
being fitted up as a finishing department. In 1892 the partner- 
ship was dissolved in consequence of Mr Ballantyne being 



412 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

appointed to the office of Burgh Chamberlain, and the business 
is now carried on by Mr Gray under the old style of Gray, 
Ballantyne, & Co. 

Gala Dyeing and Finishing Works. 

This firm originated in Rosebank Mill, the work being 
carried on by Kemp & Walker. In course of time Mr Walker 
retired, and Mr Messer occupied his place. Gala Dye Works 
were erected in 1883, and at that time the firm was known as 
John Kemp & Co. Mr Kemp retired from the business in 1888, 
since which date it has been carried on by Frank Blair associated 
with John Pritchard, who retired in 1896, when the business 
was converted into a limited liability company trading under the 
designation of Kemp, Blair, & Co., Limited. 

The following firms carry on business as wholesale tweed 
merchants, — 

J. & R. Morrison. 

This firm started business as tweed merchants in 1857 under 
the style of Morrison & Stevenson, their warehouse being in a 
building which stands in the vicinity of the old level crossing at 
the foot of Langhaugh Brae. In 1861 a change occurred, and 
at that time the firm of J. & R. Morrison came into existence. 
In 1879 the present warehouse at the Railway Station was 
erected. 

Robert Morrison died in 1881, and John in 1884. They 
were succeeded by John S. Morrison, son of John, and F. A. 
and J. S. Morrison, sons of Robert, who still trade under the old 
name of J. & R. Morrison. 

William Schulze & Company. 

Mr Schulze is a native of Brunswick, and served his 
apprenticeship in connection with the cotton trade in that place. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



413 



In i860 he removed to Hamburg, where he was engaged in the 
service o'f a firm in the export trade, and in 1864 he secured a 
situation as foreign correspondent in the firm of JaflFe Brothers 
& Co., Dundee. 

In 1867, in connection with A. G. Gow and a Hamburg 
gentleman, he started business in the jute and linen trade. 
Three years afterwards the Hamburg partner died, and his 
interest in the business was acquired by the surviving partners. 
In 187 1 the growing tweed trade attracted the attention of the 
firm, who resolved to establish a business in these goods. With 
this object, Mr Schulze took up his abode in Galashiels in 1873, 
while Mr Gow remained in Dundee in charge of the original 
business. 

Premises were secured in Ladhope Vale, and the firm 
traded under the name of Schulze, Gow, & Co. In 1875 ^he 
partnership was dissolved, and in 1890 Mr Schulze erected 
premises in Park Street, where he carries on an export trade 
under the style of William Schulze & Company. 



Lowe, Sons, & Company. 

This firm came from Peebles in 1893. Having acquired 
a site at the north end of the Station Bridge, they erected 
warehouses fitted up with all the appliances necessary to meet the 
requirements of the general tweed trade, to which they devote 
their attention. 



Roberts, Somerville, & Company. 



The advent of this firm marks the latest addition to the 
tweed trade of the town, it having commenced business in 
premises situated in Ladhope Vale in 1895. In the following 
year Mr Somerville retired, leaving the business in the hands of 
W. J. Roberts, who continues to carry it on under its original 
designation. 



414 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

BUCKHOLMSIDE SkIN AND TaN WoRKS. 

Though the firm of Sanderson & Murray, Limited, does 
not, strictly speaking, belong to the woollen industry, yet, from 
the prominent position it occupies in connection with the trade 
in the raw material, any history of the staple trade of the town 
would be incomplete without a brief sketch of its rise and 
progress. 

The- firm originated in 1844, the partners being William 
Sanderson and his brother-in-law, John Murray, who com- 
menced trading as Sanderson & Murray, their warehouse being in 
Roxburgh Street. Mr Sanderson was a son of John Sanderson, 
of the firm of Sanderson & Paterson, builders, Buckhofmside, 
and Mr Murray was a native of Old Castles, in Berwickshire. 

In 1856 they acquired about an acre of ground in Low 
Buckholmside, which at one time formed the famous garden 
belonging to Richard Lees, manufacturer. Here building was 
commenced on a small scale, and the firm began fellmongering 
foreign sheep skins. Afterwards they rented premises in 
Selkirk, where they carried on the process of tanning, but 
subsequently this branch of the business was transferred to 
Galashiels, the works having been extended to provide the 
necessary accommodation. In the course of time the ground 
became totally covered with buildings, which rose to the height 
of seven stories on the side next the Gala. There were about 
28,000 square yards of flooring within the walls, the various 
flats being devoted to the processes of soaking, sweating, pulling, 
leather-dressing and drying, besides the requisite accommodation 
for storing wool and bark. The works were fitted up with the 
most improved machinery for the purpose of cleaning and 
preparing wool for the market. On the 17th April, 1873, when 
a large addition was nearly ready for occupation, a fire broke 
out and consumed the entire building. Within the following 

year it was rebuilt, together '-•'^^ "" -^•---— ^<-^ii. ^:^:^^ 4.^ 

the height of one hundred 
works being now the large* 
of working 20,500 sheep sk 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



415 



When the action was raised against the mill owners in 1879 
to prevent the pollution of the Tweed, this firm was also 
included in the case. To comply with the order of the 
Court, extensive purification works were erected, which were 
swept away by a flood in the Gala in 1881. They were 
rebuilt on the same site, having cost altogether about ;^50oo. 
On the r4th May, 1882, another fire broke out, and the works 
were again destroyed. They were re-erected without delay, 
but modified considerably in regard to height; and, to make 
up the deficiency in floor space, additional ground was acquired 
in the immediate neighbourhood, upon which were erected large 
buildings for the storage of bark and wool. 

In 1858 a branch of the business was established at Mel- 
bourne, and subsequently other branches were opened in Geelong, 
Sydney, Dunedin, Wellington, and Napier. 

The London firm, under the designation of Sanderson, 
Murray, & Co., was started in 1870, their business being entirely 
with the Australian Colonies. In 1882 a separation of interests 
took place, when the parent firm in Galashiels was formed into 
a limited liability company, several employees becoming share- 
holders. 

The Colonial wool department is still carried on in Roxburgh 
Street, the premises having been repeatedly extended to meet 
the requirements of the trade. 

William Sanderson died in 1880, while John Murray 
continued to take an active part in the business till his death, 
which occurred in 1892. It was found, in terms of his will, 
that he had bequeathed ^'500 to be invested for the benefit of 
the poor in the town, this being the first and only instance in 
which a legacy has been left for any public object in Galashiels. 



K 



CHAPTER XVIIL 

1"^ EFERENCE has already been made to the creation of 
the Board of Trustees for Manufactures in Scot- 
land, and the object for which it was created. In the 
following pages will be found condensed extracts from the books 
belonging to that body relating to their dealings with the 
weavers, clothiers, dyers, and others belonging to Galashiels. 

These are now principally of interest on account of the 
authentic information they afford regarding the origin and 
progress of the woollen trade in the town between the years 
1729 and 1835, at which date the connection ceased. The money 
that previously had been devoted to the promotion of the 
woollen, linen, fishing, and kindred industries was transferred 
to other objects, which the Board considered equally deserving 
of encouragement. 

The first reference to Galashiels contained in the books of 
1728 the Board is dated 12th January, 1728, when it is recorded that, — 

**A petition was read from Hugh Scott, Esq. of Galla, for Gallowshiels, 
praying for the appointment of a stamp master without a salary except such 
fees as were allowed by Act of Parliament. " 

These officials were at that time appointed to various centres 
in Scotland in connection with the linen industry, which the 
Board made strenuous efforts to establish in the country. Their 
duties consisted in measuring, examining, and stamping all the 
webs of linen manufactured for sale, and attending the fairs and 
markets within their bounds where such goods were sold, to see 
that just measure was received by the purchaser. In the event 
of any goods being found not conform to description, they were 
confiscated and burned. 

In accordance with the desire expressed by Mr Scott, the 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 417 

addition of a similar appointment to Melrose, at a salary of jC 10 
per annum, and the right to use the Selkirkshire stamp for the 
Melrose goods. 

1729 In 1729, with the view of teaching improved methods of 

preparing wool for spinning, the Board of Trustees decided to 
plant a woolsorter and comber at Galashiels, at a salary of ;{^20 
per annum. In due course this functionary, whose name was 
William Shiells, arrived with the utensils requisite for carrying 
on his vocation, which the Board provided at a cost of ;^30. 

1 731 In order to encourage the linen industry throughout the 

country generally, premiums amounting to £^ each were offered 
to ^'housewives'' for the best piece of linen cloth, the yarn to be 
of their own spinning. While neither the number nor names of 
winners are recorded, housewives belonging to Galashiels are 
mentioned for several years as being successful in gaining these 
prizes. 

1739 Hitherto these competitions for premiums were the only 

references to the linen industry so far as Galashiels was con- 
cerned, which was purely of a domestic nature. In this year, 
however, John Thorburn, weaver, Galashiels, received from 
the Board the sum of ^i i, 17s 6d, being the price of two Dutch 
looms with their tackle. It is also stated that 

** The said John Thorburn had been completely instructed by the Dutch 
weaving master in the perfect and true method of weaving plain linen after the 
Dutch manner." 

The Board imported these master weavers from Holland 
and settled them at various centres in Scotland for the purpose 
of instructing the natives in the weaving of linen. Women were 
also brought from France and established in a similar manner to 
teach girls the art of spinning. 

The next reference to the village is contained in an extract 
from a letter to the following effect, — 

** Lady Galla informed the Board that William Shiells, woolsorter and 
manufacturer at Galashiels, tho' very well skilled in his business, had run into 
debt, so that all his goods were distressed and poinded, and that he had not 
attended nor followed his work for some time, and praying that two William- 
sons be appointed in his place." 

AI 



4i8 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

The Board made inquiry into this report, and also into the 
qualifications of the Williamsons, the result being that Shiells 
was suspended, and intimation was made to Mr Scott of Gala that 
either of the Williamsons might be appointed at his discretion. 

These Williamsons were evidently the only firm of manu- 
facturers in the village at that date, as they alone received a grant 
of £3P for carrying on a manufactory of tarred wool. Possibly 
their attention was wholly occupied with the preparation of the 
wool, leaving to the weavers the duty of making the homespun 
yarn into cloth. During the succeeding seven years they received 
the sum of ^^115 in grants and premiums on the amount of 
wool they manufactured, the premiums being at the rate of one 
shilling per stone. 
1747 From some unexplained reason the infant industry suddenly 

collapsed, William Williainson ceases to be mentioned, and the 
quantity of wool manufactured fell oflF in a large degree. In 
these circumstances it is recorded that 

"The Board, observing from the report that James Williamson had only 
manufactured 25 stones of wool, and his workhouse being* in a ruinous 
condition, thinks he should be struck off the establishment." 

This course had evidently been carried into effect, as no 
further notice can be found concerning him. 
1 761 The next reference to Galashiels occurs in 1761, when the 

Board is found discussing a copy of a letter from the Deacon of 
the weavers in Jedburgh to the Deacon of the weavers in Gala- 
shiels regarding a combination of weavers in the shires of 
Roxburgh, Berwick, and Selkirk to raise the price for weaving. 
In regard to this proceeding on the part of the weavers, which 
in those days was illegal, the Board directed that 

** An advertisement be put into the Edinburgh newspapers and scattered 
through the said three shires to notify to the country that the Board have been 
informed of such a combination, and had ordered a prosecution of those who 
were most active in forming it, and to warn all others from such unjust and 
illegal covenants.*' 

In this case the Board contented themselves with issuing 

the warning; no steps were taken to carry the above threatened 

prosecution into effect. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 419 

1762 At this time John Scott of Gala petitioned the Board for a 

lint mill to be erected at Galashiels. Consideration of this 

, request was delayed until it should be seen how a new flax 

\ machine in course of being fitted up would work. The invention 

proved a failure, and no further mention is made regarding 

} the establishment of a lint mill. It is alleged that at one time 

, lint was extensively cultivated in the locality, but no ground can 

I be found for the statement. The **Lint** or ^^Lintie'* Burn is 

said to have derived its name from the practice of steeping flax 

in it, but, unfortunately for the theory, the burn in question was 

J also termed the '* Linn*' Burn, so called evidently from the rapidity 

with which its waters flowed down the hill side. The Board 

offered premiums to those who grew flax, and on one occasion it is 

recorded that Mr Scott of Gala had four acres and two roods of 

land cropped with this plant. Towards the close of last century 

Dr Douglas stated that the cottagers in the village grew a little 

flax for domestic purposes, the ground being obtained from the 

surrounding farmers. 

A complement of caulms and reeds to the value of ;^30 was 
given in 1762 to the weavers of Galashiels and Melrose, but in 
what proportion is not recorded. 

1764 The weaving of woollen goods must have been growing into 

some importance in the village, as, with the view of checking 
fraud upon the purchasers, the Board of Trustees appointed a 
stamp-master for woollen cloth to be stationed at Galashiels, 
at a salary of ;£^ per annum. 

I 1 774 In 1774 a petition was presented to the Board of Trustees 

by Mr Scott of Gala, requesting *'some encouragement to the 
woollen manufacturers at his village of Galashiels.'' After 
consideration, the Board agreed to give a woad vat to the person 
J who dyed woad there, also that the sum of ;^io should be given 

J to Mr Scott for the purpose of providing premiums to the weavers 



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420 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Turnbull, Galashiels, received the sum of jCs for instructing 
George Mercer, jun., in the art of dyeing woad. Reference to 
this transaction will be found in the report regarding Galashiels, 
furnished to the Board by David Loch, one of their inspectors, 
which has been given elsewhere. 

1776 At this date a petition from the clothiers of Galashiels was 

presented to the Board requesting them to erect a house for the 
purpose of storing their woollen cloth. This request evidently 
surprised the Board, as they wrote to Mr Scott of Gala 
requesting information regarding "the nature of the encourage- 
ment the clothiers expected,'' and also stating ** that the Board 
would choose to see some contribution from himself in this 
matter.*' No further reference was made regarding the store- 
house, but in the following year Mr Scott again made 
application for ^^20 for premiums for the next two years, together 
with ** one of the new wheels for spinning wool for his village of 
Galashiels as a pattern to the clothiers there." This request 
was granted so far as the money was concerned, and the wheel 
was promised, provided the secretary was satisfied that it was 
put into the hands of some one competent to use it. 

1780 Mr Scott again applied to the Board for the usual amount 

for providing premiums, but on this occasion it was remitted to 
Lord Gardenston to make inquiry regarding the effect produced 
by the former grants when he went on the ensuing south circuit. 
The following report was presented to the Board, — 

' ' I found in this village a number of very industrious people — there are 
between thirty and forty weavers, and above sixty spinners — the people have of 
late years improved the fineness and fabric of their cloth, and they find a good 
sale for it In my opinion the landlord is not so liberal to them as he ought 
to be upon just considerations of public and private interest. He grants no 
feus, and for 99 years* leases not renewable he exacts a very high ground 
rent, for sites of houses and gardens, at the rate of about £^0 per acre. I 
could not discover in my inquiry that he had ever given anything to their 
industry out of his own pocket. With regard to the ;^io allowed for the last 
two years, the fact is, it was the first year distributed in small sums among the 
spinners and weavers, and did no good, but for the most part was idly spent.* 
The second year's bounty was more properly bestowed, cards were purchased 
and given to the best spinners to the extent of ;^5. The other £$ was given 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 421 

to the weavers, who contributed a similar sum among themselves, and this 
fund was well employed in erecting a common dye-house, which has been of 
real benefit to these tradesmen. I am of opinion that the Board may very 
properly give the ten pounds, provided the proprietor gives a similar amount, 
and the tradesmen again raise a fund of five pounds among themselves, and 
by means of the whole contribution a common ware-room for the safe custody 
of the goods may be erected, which would prove of great service to this place. 
But in that case the landlord ought to grant some proper right, at the sight 
and to the satisfaction of the Boards in favour of the tradesmen, for they have 
no right to their dye-house." 

While the proposed building for storing cloth was not at 
that time carried into effect, it would appear that the conditions 
suggested by Lord Gardenston in connection with the premium 
had been fulfilled, as the sum of ;^io was granted. 

1783 At this time a petition was presented to the Board from 
George Mercer, clothier at Wilderhaugh, near Galashiels, pray- 
ing for some aid '^to enable him to complete a waulkmill which 
he is at present erecting on a new and improved plan.** This 
petition was supported by Mr Scott of Gala and Mr Pringle of 
Torwoodlee, and the Board allowed the petitioner ;^20 for the 
purpose specified. 

1784 In the following year another petition was presented by 
George Mercer, setting forth 

**That he intended making a journey through the principal manufacturing 
towns in England, with the view to observe the various methods practised in 
the manufacturing of woollen cloth, and to collect such information as might 
enable him to improve his own manufacture, and those of his neighbourhood, 
and praying for encouragement from the Board to the extent of £40.'* 

To this request the Board agreed on the condition that 
they were supplied with full particulars of the journey, and it 
was referred to the Lord Chief Baron to take the trouble of pay- 
ing the above sum in such moieties as his lordship should judge 
proper, and to converse with and lay such injunctions upon the 
petitioner as he might deem necessary. 

Another petition was presented to the Board from Thomas 
Frier, weaver, Galashiels, setting forth that, in consequence of 



422 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

having lost a leg, he is under the necessity of learning the busi- 
ness of stocking-making, and praying the Board to allow him 
a frame. The petition was refused on the ground that the Board 
considered he could have no use for a frame till such time as he 
was instructed in the business. 

While endeavouring to encourage the woollen industry the 
Board did not strictly confine their attention to the manufacturing 
of cloth only, but also offered premiums to farmers all over the 
country, in order to encourage the growth of wool. Amongst 
the successful competitors in this district was Thomas Sinton, 
tenant in Torwoodlee Mains, who was awarded the sum of ;^io 
for the best smeared wool in the shire of Selkirk. On other 
occasions a similar amount was gained by James Laidlaw of 
Ashiestiel, John Murray of Elibank, and Robert Laidlaw of the 
Peel. 
1785 The grants offered by the Board for the improvement of 

machinery and methods of working now commenced to be taken 
advantage of, and it is to be regretted that the information 
has to be taken from condensed statements in the minute books 
of the Board, the original papers having unfortunately been 
destroyed. 

The pioneer of the movement was George Mercer, who, in 
1 785, made application for the following articles, viz., — 

A drying house, some scribbling machines, a large woad 
vat upon the plan of those he saw the previous year at Kendal 
and Leeds, in order to enable him to carry on his manufacture 
of coarse woollen cloth in a proper and spirited manner. Also 
an annual allowance for three or four years. The total cost 
amounted to ^^40, os 3^d, and the Board allowed him the sum 
of jC 30j his request for an annual allowance being refused. 

Petition from George Walker for a woad vat, a set of weav- 
ing reeds, and some pairs of scribbling machines. — £14, allowed. 

Petition from George Clapperton praying for a woad vat 
and two scribbling machines. — ^^^lo allowed. 

Petition from Robert Walker for a woad vat and one 
scribbling machine. — ^;^io allowed. 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 423 

1786 The following year another petition was presented by 
George Clapperton, requesting the Board to provide him with a 
drying house and boiler. This request was refused on the 
ground of his being so recently assisted. 

1787 A petition was presented from the woollen weavers of Gala- 
shiels requesting the Board to erect a drying house with a 
suitable stove. Previous to considering this request, the Board 
sent an official to Galashiels to make inquiry. The report 
showed that the drying house would be of great service, but that 
a house open at the sides was to be recommended rather than 
one altogether closed, the cost of such being estimated at jCsS' 
The minister of the parish along with the session were suggested 
to regulate and manage the proposed house. The Board then 
communicated with Captain Scott of Gala regarding his terms 
for a feu, to which he replied, ''all that is required of feu duty 
is a kain hen or one shilling yearly.*' The Board returned their 
thanks to Captain Scott for his readiness and disinterested 
conduct in the matter, but resolved before coming to a decision 
to make inquiry regarding what sort of houses were erected for 
a similar purpose in England. Pending their decision, Dr 
Douglas wrote to the Board informing them that Mr Pringle of 
Torwoodlee, Mr Pringle of Fernielea, and Bailie Paterson would 
be associated wfth him in the management, and requesting the 
Board to defray the whole cost of the erection. Eventually the 
Board agreed to give two-thirds, provided the total cost did not 
exceed ;^ioo, the building to be erected at the sight and under 
the management of Dr Douglas. 

Another petition was presented from George Mercer setting 
forth that he had good reason to believe that he could construct 
a machine for teasing wool, to go by water, upon an improved 
plan, and stating his willingness to communicate the benefit of 
the contrivance without any reward, provided the Board granted 
their assistance in making the machine. To this application the 
Board replied by requesting information regarding the probable 
cost, and desiring that a model of the invention be submitted to 
them. This having been complied with, the opinion of a *'man 



424 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

of skill ** was taken regarding it, who considered that a good 
deal of merit was due to Mr Mercer on account of his invention, 
but he did not think it would prove successful. In the circum- 
stances the Board decided to allow the petition to lie over for 
a time. 

1788 In 1788 Richard Lees, manufacturer and dyer, Buckholm- 
side, petitioned the Board to grant him an allowance for the 
purpose of enabling him to visit England with the view of 
acquiring a more perfect knowledge of all the branches of the 
woollen manufacture than he had access to in Scotland, and on 
his return he would communicate to the other manufacturers 
such improvements as he might be able to observe during his 
journey. — jCio allowed. 

Petition from James Walker requesting a woad vat, a 
common vat, a boiler, a stove, and two scribbling machines, 
recommended by the Duke of Buccleuch. — ;^20 allowed. 

Robert Walker, Darling's Haugh, near Galashiels, also 
presented a petition desiring aid to enable him to erect a waulk- 
mill. He was recommended by Dr Monroe, trustee on the 
estate of Gala, who promised a site on favourable terms. The 
Board communicated with Dr Douglas, requesting to know if the 
proposed waulkmill would prove a public benefit. Dr Douglas 
stated that the mill was primarily intended for private use, 
but the public would be allowed the use of it on moderate 
terms, when not otherwise employed. This was not considered 
satisfactory, and the Board refused the petition. 

1789 Petition from George Mercer for aid in defraying the 
expense of sending his son into England for the purpose of 
learning to work the spinning jenny. — jC^o allowed. 

Petition from Robert Walker, Darling's Haugh, for a large 
dyeing vat, to enable him to dye his cloth in the wool, agreeable 
to the conditions for the competitions for premiums. This 
petition was refused on the ground that were the Board to 
accede to this request they would in all probability be under 
the necessity of supplying a similar article to every competitor. 

1790 A petition was presented from John Roberts in Galashiels, 
requesting some allowance on account of the expense of sending 



.\ 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 425 

his son to England for improvement in his knowledge of woollen 
manufacture. Dr Douglas supported this petition, and the Board 
agreed to give jC^ in the meantime, and the remainder when the 
son returned and settled in the country. 

Petition from Robert Walker praying for a new machine for 
spinning, of improved construction, lately invented in England. 
— ;^io allowed. 
1 791 Petition from George Mercer for aid in erecting a teasing 

machine of his own invention to go by water ; also for 
assistance to enable him to bring down from England and erect 
a scribbling machine, also to go by water. Likewise to bring 
down a person to show the manner of using the machine till the 
petitioner or his son had learned how to work it, the total cost 
being estimated at ^^200. The Board allowed jCyo on 
condition that the machine should be open to the inspection of 
the Board, or any person whoni they might appoint. 

Shortly afterwards another petition was presented by George 
Mercer, requesting the Board to provide him with one of the new 
spinning jennies. For this purpose he was allowed ;^io, and the 
Board suggested that the machine should be made in Galashiels, 
failing which, in Scotland; and, if this could not be done, he was 
to order two or three of these machines from Leeds. 

At the same time Mercer lodged a claim against the Board 
for £$j for instructing the son and daughter of Walter Mercer 
at Lauder Waulkmill in spinning and roving of wool. This 
claim was allowed. 
j^Q2 Another petition was laid before the Board from John 

Roberts, clothier, which set forth that, owing to bad health, his 
son had to return from England sooner than he intended, but 
during his stay of four months he had learned to spin on the 
jenny, having brought home one of these machines, and 
requesting that the remainder of the promised allowance should 
be given, together with some aid toward the erecting of a 
workhouse for the petitioner and his family. — £$ allowed. 

James Walker, blanket manufacturer, presented a petition 
to the Board, showing that he was at a great loss for want of a 



426 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

loom of sufficient width, also a spinning machine, a teasing 
machine, a raising machine, and a set of tenters. Along with this 
little order he also requested the Board to assist him in erecting a 
house to contain these articles. This petition was supported by 
the Duke of Buccleuch and the Earl of Buchan. The Board 
delayed consideration of his petition on account of certain 
improvements which they understood were being effected in 
looms, and in the following year they granted a broad loom, 
with the recommendation to procure one of the best description; 
the other items were refused. 

Petition from William Thomson, clothier arid dyer, for 
assistance to enable him to visit England for further insight 
into the woollen manufacture. jC^o was allowed, with the 
promise of a spinning jenny when he returned and settled down 
in Galashiels. 

1793 Petition from George Clapperton requesting aid to enable 
him to purchase and erect a pressof new construction for woollen 
cloth. The Board granted one half the cost, provided the price 
of the press did not exceed ;^40. 

1794 Petition from Robert Gill, David Grieve, Adam Cochrane, 
and Richard Lees, manufacturers in Galashiels, setting forth that 
as they were not able individually to erect machinery to go by 
water, for teasing, scribbling, and carding wool, they had joined 
together and erected most substantial machinery for these 
purposes at great expense, and praying for some allowance. 
Refused, on the ground that the Board did not give grants 
towards the erection of buildings. 

Petition from Robert Walker, Buckholmside, for a broad 
loom, a raising machine, and a brusher for finishing blankets, 
there being no such machines yet in Scotland. The Board 
granted a similar loom to that obtained by James Walker in 1792. 

1795 ^^ Douglas at this time presented a petition on behalf of 
Robert and James Walker, who claimed to be the first and only 
blanket manufacturers in Galashiels, requesting assistance to 
help them to procure twining and warping machines for 
Robert, and raising and brushing machines for James, to enable 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 427 

him to finish his blankets like those made in Wiltshire. The 
total cost of the machines was stated to amount to ^^50, and the 
Board granted £^2. 

1796 Petition presented to the Board from the Weavers' Corpora- 
tion praying" for an assortment of reeds and caulms to cost ;^30. 
The Board allowed ;^20, and Dr Douglas was instructed to see 
that the members of the Weavers' Corporation benefited equally. 

A petition was presented by Richard Lees, manufacturer of 
worsted stuffs at Buckholmside, requesting assistance to enable 
him to procure a press with strong screws, &c., like those used 
in England for giving the finishing gloss to worsted stuffs for 
gowns, petticoats, window curtains, &c., of which goods he is 
the only manufacturer in this country. — ^^25 allowed. 

1797 Another petition was presented by Richard Lees, stating 
that the press he had erected cost jC74 and requesting a further 
allowance. — £1$ allowed. 

1800 Petition from Murray & Finnie, woollen manufacturers in 
Galashiels, requesting a woad vat, boiler, and press. The Board 
refused on the ground that they saw nothing in the case to enable 
them to comply with their request. 

1801 Petition from the Clothiers' Corporation requesting the 
Board to allow a small sum in order to defray the expense of 
sending James Dalgliesh, gardener, to England, for the purpose 
of learning to cultivate and prepare woad for dyeing, in order, on 
his return, to instruct others how to raise that useful plant. — ;^io 
allowed. 

A petition from George Mercer set forth that he had been 
at great expense in bringing machinery from England, and 
requesting assistance to enable him to erect a drying house to 
complete his operations. — jCso allowed. 

1802 Petition from James Melrose, smith in Galashiels, request- 
ing some pecuniary assistance on account of his making and 
improving machinery for the woollen manufacture. The Board 
placed ;^io in the hands of Dr Douglas to be given to Melrose 
in instalments to enable him to go on improving and perfecting 
the machinery. 



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428 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1804 Petition from Robert Gill praying for aid in erecting a house 

to hold his looms and spinning jennies. Refused, with the ex- 
planation that it was not customary to give aid toward the 
erection of buildings. 

1807 Petition from woollen weavers in Galashiels for fifty fine 

reeds to cost about ten shillings each. — ;^2i allowed. 

Petition from Richard Lees, setting forth that he had erected 
a gig mill, or raising machine for flannel and cloth, which could 
perform as much work in an hour and a half as two men could 
accomplish in a day by the ordinary method, it being the first 
machine of its kind erected in Galashiels, and requested assist- 
ance. — ;^20 allowed. 

1809 Petition from Joshua Wood, Galashiels, stating that he had 

recently begun the manufacture of blankets, and had provided 
the necessary apparatus with the exception of tenters, which 
would cost jC26j and requesting the Board to aid him to that 
extent. — jCiS allowed. 

181 1 Richard Lees petitioned the Board for assistance in defray- 

ing the expense of a machine which he had procured from 
England, for the purpose of working by water-power the shears 
employed in cropping woollen cloth, by which a man and a boy 
could direct four or six pairs, each of which if wrought by hand 
required one man. This machine was the first of its kind in 
Scotland, and cost jC^Sj besides a further outlay of jC9^ would 
be required to erect a new water-wheel. — £45 allowed. 

1 81 3 Petition from George Mercer & Son for aid to rebuild their 

manufacturing house, and more particularly to replace the 
machinery, which they had the misfortune to lose by an 
accidental fire, while the premises were insured for only ;^6oo. 
The Board refused this petition, and declared that they considered 
the conduct of manufacturers who neglected to insure their 
property fully was quite unjustifiable. 

181 5 Petition from William and David Thomson for assistance 
in erecting new and improved machinery costing jCt^S. — j^ioo 
allowed. 

1 816 Petition from Richard Lees praying for aid to enable him 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 429 

to erect a new machine not yet known in Scotland, called a 
shearing machine or ** perpetual backer/' which is used in con- 
nection with the cropping machine, and will cost jC^o. — ^^20 
allowed. 

Petition from William and Simon Bathgate, millwrights in 
Galashiels, requesting a reward for constructing a machine to go 
by water upon such a simple plan that yarn can be spun at one 
half the expense of that spun by the hand jenny. Refused on 
the ground that the Board considered the alleged invention was 
merely an adaptation of the process of spinning cotton. 

Petition from Walter Mercer, Galashiels, stating that after 
much pains he had constructed a machine for doubling, twisting, 
and reeling woollen yarn at one and the same time, and 
requesting aid to assist him in defraying the expense. — ;^2i 
allowed. Mr Richard Lees was requested to report on this 
invention. 
1 8 18 Petition from James Leitch, wheelwright, requesting a 

premium on account of having made an improvement on the 
two-handed spinning wheel. After examination it was reported 



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430 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1823 Petition from George Paterson and partners praying for aid 

towards the payment of a new set of machinery to cost jCs^S- 
— ^;^5o allowed. 

Petition from James Sime & Co. requesting a grant in aid 
of the payment of a new set of machines costing ;^32 5. — jCso 
allowed. 

1825 Petition from Richard Lees praying for aid on account of 

having erected two sets of machinery costing ;^6oo. The Board, 
considering that some of this machinery had been erected in 181 5, 
allowed the maximum grant of jCyo. 

1827 Petition from Thomas Mercer, Galashiels, setting forth 

that at various times he had erected two sets of machinery, one 
being used for carding and spinning coloured wool, and the 
other for white. The machinery was new and improved, and on 
a larger scale than any yet introduced into Galashiels. Also a 
loom for weaving broadcloth had been procured, the first of its 
kind erected in the town, the total cost of which machinery had 
been ;^859. — ;^ioo allowed. 

Petition from John Hislop, blacksmith and machine maker, 
stating that he had devoted his time and attention for twenty 
years to the making and improving of the machinery required 
for the woollen manufacture, and had been fortunate enough 
to effect a variety of improvements thereon, to the great 
convenience and benefit of all the manufacturers of Galashiels and 
other places, and that his recent improvement of the American 
machine for cropping or cutting the pile of cloth had met with 
the greatest approbation, and had been commissioned even by 
several manufacturers in Yorkshire, and praying for some en- 
couragement. A certificate was also read from the principal 
manufacturers in Galashiels, bearing testimony to his very 
superior skill and the many important and valuable improve- 
ments in machinery made by him. Before coming to a decision, 
the Board wrote to Kendal and Leeds, asking information 
regarding the improved cropper. A reply from Leeds stated 
that it was merely an infringement of an English patent, while 
that from Kendal held it to be a superior machine of its kind 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 431 

to anything in use. The Board, considering the opinions 
expressed regarding the machine by the Galashiels manufacturers 
coincided with the report from Kendal, granted ;^50. 
1829 Petition from Robert Sanderson, Galashiels, showing that 

he had erected two complete sets of machines, consisting of two 
double scribblers, two double carders, two spinning billys, a 
waulkmill, water-wheel, and gig for dressing cloth, at a cost of 
;^i034, and asking some allowance. — ;^i5o allowed. 

Petition from Henry Sanderson, Galashiels, requesting aid 
to erect a "Lewis'* or cropping machine, a broad raising machine 
with the latest improvements, broad looms, a mule jenny with 
168 spindles, a broad brushing machine on the newest principle, 
the whole estimated to cost ;^ 180. Allowed £36^ but on account 
of the above machinery being procured for jC^45j the grant was 
restricted to jC^g. 

Petition from George Paterson requesting an allowance on 
account of having erected new and fine machinery. — jCso allowed. 
1830 Petition from William Kemp, turner in Galashiels, for im- 

provements in machinery for cutting wheels &c. — jC^S allowed. 

Petition from Richard Lees on behalf of the manufacturers 
of Galashiels, setting forth that they were deficient in the know- 
ledge of dyeing fancy colours, such as browns, olives, &c., as 
well as in the dressing and finishing of the cloth, and that he is 
desirous, for the general benefit, to visit Yorkshire with the view 
of learning the improved methods, to put them in practice in 
Galashiels, and requested the Board to give a grant in aid of the 
expenses connected with the proposed expedition. The Board 
in this case declined to grant any particular sum, but expressed 
their willingness to leave the question open till Mr Lees returned, 
when, if it was found that his visit to England had been productive 
of benefit to the manufacturers generally, they would take into 
consideration what proportion of the expense they would allow. 
Payment by results did not coincide with the prevailing ideas at 
that time, and nothing further is recorded regarding the proposal. 

Petition from Thomas Mercer requesting a grant on account 
of additions to his machinery for carding and spinning, also to 



432 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

his raising and brushing machinery. — ^^35 allowed. 

Petition from William Gill, Andrew Dickson, John and 
Robert Inglis, F. & F. Inglis, William Frier, and W. & A. 
Hislop, manufacturers of blankets and flannels, stating the great 
disadvantage they labour under from want of proper machinery 
for finishing these branches of manufacture, and praying the 
Board to grant machines for raising, brushing, and teaseling, 
the estimated cost being ;^i05. The Board agreed to allow one 
half the cost, provided the machines were made publicly useful. 

Petition from Robert Ford, blacksmith, requesting the Board 
to grant him some acknowledgment on account of having effected 
some improvements in spinning jennies. — jC2i allowed. 

1 83 1 Petition from woollen weavers in Galashiels, requesting a 
supply of reeds suitable for looms of double width, such being 
estimated to cost ;^6o. The Board, considering the meritorious 
character of the manufacturing community of Galashiels, agreed 
to allow one half the expense on condition that an equal sum be 
contributed by the weavers themselves, all disputes regarding 
their use to be referred to the Bailie and minister. 

1832 Petition from George Roberts, jun., setting forth that he 
is erecting a finer set of carding machines upon a plan entirely 
new in Scotland, whereby the operation called slubbing is super- 
seded, the wool being at once carried from the carding machine 
to the jenny. — ;^ioo allowed. 

1833 At this time the Board made inquiry regarding the opinions 
held by the manufacturers of Galashiels in connection with the 
premiums on woollen cloth and the grants in aid for purchasing 
machinery. Richard Lees replied on behalf of the manufacturers, 
stating that in their opinion the premiums were too small com- 
pared with the value of the goods required to compete in the 
various classes, and they suggested that a few pounds added to 
premiums would prove of more benefit than grants to individuals 
for the improvement of machinery. 

After this declaration oa the part of the manufacturers, it 
would appear that, so far as Galashiels was concerned, no 
further grants were applied for. 



CHAPTER XIX. 

IN addition to the grants given by the Board of Trustees for 
the purpose of assisting the manufacturers of linen and 
woollen cloth to provide the newest and most improved 
machinery, they also set apart an annual sum for the purpose of 
providing premiums to be competed for by the makers of these 
goods. 

Up to 1780 these premiums for woollen goods had been 
gained principally by manufacturers in Edinburgh, Dalkeith, 
Musselburgh, and Montrose. In that year, however, George 
Mercer of Galashiels entered the lists, and in a very few years 
the manufacturers of that town succeeded so rapidly in improv- 
ing the quality of their goods that they practically carried off 
nearly all the prizes. 

This pre-eminence was maintained till 1834, when the 
system came to a close. At that date the report of the judge for 
woollen goods stated that 

"The Board having restricted manufacturers to Scotch wool, not being" 
aware that these cloths cannot be made to compete with the English at the 
same prices, he regrets to find that the number of entries in this class has 
rfearly all fallen away.** 

The Board, however, pursued its own course, and, possibly 
under the idea that the linen and woollen trades were now able 
to hold their own, the premiums for these goods were with- 
drawn altogether. In 1837 it is recorded by another of the 
judges that 

**It is very unpleasant to see that the exhibition of damasks, woollen 
cloths, blankets, &c. , which were wont to come from Dunfermline, Aberdeen, 
Dundee, Galashiels, Hawick, Kilmarnock, and Glasgow, from which places 
there is not now a single piece of cloth, which without doubt is occasioned by 
there being no specific premium held forth as formerly for these manufactures." 

433 Bi 




Digitized by V:iOOQIC 



434 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



Price per Yd. 
S. D. 



1780 George Mercer, flannel, yard wide, 

1781 George Mercer, ,, ,, ,, 

1782 George Mercer, ,, ,, ,, 

1783 George Mercer, „ „ ,, 

1784 No premium offered for flannel. 

1785 George Mercer, dressed cloth, three-quarters wide, 3 

1786 George Mercer, Hunter's cloth, ... ... 4 

Robert Walker, dressed cloth, ... ... 2 

James Walker, ,, ,, ... ... 2 

1787 George Mercer, Hunter's cloth, seven-eighths wide, 4 
Robert Walker, jun., dressed cloth, three-quarters 

wide, ... ... ... ... 3 

George Clapperton, dressed cloth, ... 3 

James Walker, dre.ssed cloth, ... ... 2 

1788 George Mercer, Hunter's cloth, seven-eighths wide, 4 
Robert Walker, jun, „ three-quarters ,, 3 
George Clapperton, ,, „ m 3 
James Walker, dressed woollen cloth, ... 2 
Robert Scott, ,, ,, ,, ... 2 

1789 George Mercer, Hunter's cloth, seven-eighths wide, 4 
Robert Walker, jun., ,, „ 4 
William Johnston, dressed woollen cloth, ... 2 
Adam Cochran, ,, ,, ,, ... 2 

1790 George Mercer, Hunter's cloth, ... ... 4 

Robert Walker, jun., ,, 

Adam Cochran, dressed woollen cloth, ... 3 

David Grieve, ,, ,, ,, ... 3 

Robert Gill, ,, ,, ,, ... 2 

William Johnston, ,, ,, ,, ... 2 
George Clapperton, common white flannel, ... 

James Walker, baize, yard wide, ... ... i 

1791 David Grieve, Hunter's cloth, ... ... 5 

Robert Walker, ,, ... ... 5 

William Johnston, dressed woollen cloth, ... 3 

Adam Cochran, ,, ,, ,, 3 

Andrew Henderson, ,, ,, ,, 2 
Hugh Sanderson, flannel, 

James Walker, blankets, imitation English, 
Margeret Laidlaw, flannel, imitation Welsh, 



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Digitized by 



Google 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



435 



1792 Adam Cochran, Hunter's cloth, 
Robert Gill, „ ,, 
George Clapperton, ,, ,, 
David Grieve, dressed woollen cloth, 
Andrew Henderson, ,, ,, 

James Walker, blankets, imitation English, 
Margeret Laidlaw, flannel, imitation Welsh, 

1793 George Clapperton, Hunter's cloth, 
Robert Gill, ,, ,, 
Adam Cochran, dressed woollen cloth, 
William Thomson, ,, ,, ,, 
Walker & Knox, ,, ,, ,, 
Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, ,, 

1794 Adam Cochran, Hunter's cloth, 
George Clapperton, ,, ,, 

David Grieve, dressed woollen cloth, 

Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, ,, 

Adam Young, ,, „ ,, 

Robert Walker, ,, ,, ,, 

James Walker, 2_dozen blankets (per pair, 13/), 

*795 James Sime, striped cloth, 

Hugh Sanderson, Hunter's cloth, ... 
John Lees & Son, „ ,, 

William Thomson, dressed woollen cloth, ... 
William Haldane, „ „ „ 

Robert Walker, „ „ „ ... 

Andrew Henderson, „ ,, ,, 

Margeret Laidlaw, flannel, imitation Welsh, 
James Walker, blankets (per pair, 13/), 

'79^ James Sime, striped cloth, 

John Lees & Son, Hunter's cloth, ... 
Thomas Clapperton, ,, „ 

William Thomson, dressed woollen cloth, ... 
Hugh Sanderson, „ „ „ ... 

Andrew Henderson, ,, „ ,, 

Margeret Laidlaw, flannel, imitation Welsh, 

1797 Thomas Clapperton, Forest cloth, 
Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, 

James Johnston, dressed woollen cloth, 
James Sime, ,, ,, ,, 



Price 


per Yd 


Premium. 


S. 


D. 


£ 


s. 


D. 


5 





10 








5 





10 








5 





ID 








3 





7 








2 





8 








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9 








... 




4 








5 





16 








5 





12 








3 





13 








3 





8 








2 





10 








... 




7 








4 


6 


16 








4 


6 


II 








3 





13 








2 





10 








2 





9 








2 





7 








... 




13 








5 





12 








4 


6 


18 








4 


6 


II 








3 





14 








3 





6 








2 





II 








2 





7 








1 


6 


8 








... 




16 








5 





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4 


9 


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4 


9 


15 








3 


3 


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2 


3 


12 








2 


3 


6 








I 


6 


6 








5 


6 


24 








4 


6 


20 








3 


3 


II 








3 


3 


ij 









Digitized by 



Google 



436 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



1797 Robert Heatlie, dressed woollen cloth, 
Robert Gill, ,, ,, ,, 

1798 Hug'h Sanderson, Forest cloth, 
T. & A. Clapperton, ,, ,, 
James Sime, dressed woollen cloth, 
James Johnstone, „ ,, ,, 
William Brown, ,, ,, ,, 
Robert Walker, ,, ,, ,, 
Margeret Laidlaw, flannel, 

1799 '^- & ^' Clapperton, Forest cloth, 
James Sime, m t* 
William Thomson, ,, ,, 
Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, 
Robert Walker, ,, ,, 
William Brown, ,, ,, 
James Johnston, ,, ,, 
Margeret Laidlaw, common white flannel, . 

1800 George Mercer, Forest cloth, 
James Johnston, ,, ,, 
Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, 
W. & D. Thomson,,, „ 

T. & A. Clapperton, dressed woollen cloth, 
John Roberts, „ ., ,, 

William Brown, ,, ,, ,, 

Robert Walker, ,, ,, ,, 

Margeret Laidlaw, for well-made flannel, 

1 801 George Mercer & Sons, Forest cloth, 
John Lees & Son, ,, ,, 
Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, 
David Thomson, ,, ,, 
John Lees, jun., „ ,, 
James Johnston, ,, ,, 
Robert Walker, ,, ,, 
Andrew Clapperton, ,, ,, 
John Roberts, »» » 
William Brown, 10 pieces baize, ... 
Margeret Laidlaw, flannel, 

1802 George Mercer & Sons, Forest cloth, 
George Murray, ,, ,, 
David Thomson, „ ,, 



Price 


per Yd 


. Premium. 


s. 


D. 


£ 


s. 


D. 


2 


3 


12 








2 


3 


6 








5 


6 


16 








5 


6 


8 








4 


6 


20 








3 


3 


15 








2 


3 


9 








2 


3 


9 








I 


8 


6 








5 





II 








5 





'3 


10 





5 





13 


10 





3 





13 








3 





6 








2 


3 


10 








2 


3 


5 








I 


4 


8 








5 


6 


22 








4 


6 


18 








4 


6 


9 








4 


6 


9 








3 


3 


13 








3 


3 


6 








2 


3 


10 








2 


3 


5 








I 


4 


12 








5 


6 


22 








5 


6 


II 








4 


6 


18 








4 


6 


9 








3 


3 


8 








3 


3 


6 








3 


3 


5 








2 


3 


10 








2 


3 


5 








2 


3 


10 








I 


8 


14 








5 


6 


22 








5 


6 


II 








4 


6 


18 









HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



437 



1802 Andrew Clapperton, dressed woollen cloth, 
Robert Walker, „ ,, ,, 
Margeret Laidlaw, flannel, 

1803 W. & D. Thomson, Forest cloth, 
George Murray, ,, ,, 
William Brown, „ ,, 
Andrew Clapperton, ,, ,, 
Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, 
John Roberts, jun., & Co., ,, ,, 

1804 Hugh Sanderson, ,, ,, 
Robert Gill, ,, ,, 
George Roberts, ,, ,, 
William Brown, ,, ,, 
Robert Walker, ,, ,, 
Joshua Wood, „ „ 
George Murray, „ „ 

1805 W. & D. Thomson, ,, ,, ' 
Thomas Clapperton, ,, ,, 
Hugh Sanderson, ,, „ 
W. & D. Thomson, ,, ,, 
Thomas Clapperton, ,, ,, 
William Brown, ,, ,, 
George Roberts, „ ,, 
Joshua Wood, ,, ,, 
George Murray, ,, ,, 
William Brown, duffle or coating, 
Joshua Wood, flannel, 

1806 W. & D. Thomson, Forest cloth, 
George Mercer & Sons, ,, ,, 
W. & D. Thomson, „ ,, 
Adam Dobson, ,, ,, 
John Gledhill, ,, „ 
George Mercer & Sons, duffle, 
William Laing, flannel, ... 
Joshua Wood, ,, 
Robert Walker & Son, dressed woollen cloth, 

1807 W. & D. Thomson, Forest cloth, 
John Gledhill, „ „ 
John Lees, ,, » 
Adam Dobson, ,, », 



Price 


per Yd. 


Premium. 


s. 


D. 


£ 


S. 


D 


3 


3 


ID 








2 


^ 



ID 








I 


8 


5 








5 


6 


16 


10 





5 


6 


10 








4 


6 


18 








4 


6 


9 








3 


3 


'3 








3 


3 


6 








5 


6 


22 








5 


6 


1 1 








4 


6 


7 








4 


6 


7 








3 


4 


'3 








2 


6 


10 








2 


6 


5 








5 


6 


22 








5 


6 


5 


10 





5 


6 


5 


10 





4 


6 


18 








4 


6 


9 








3 


4 


9 


10 





3 


4 


9 


10 





2 


3 


7 


10 





2 


3 


7 


10 





... 




12 








I 


8 


>4 








6 


6 


22 








6 


6 


II 








5 





18 








5 





9 








3 


8 


13 








4 


7 


12 








.. 




6 












5 








2 


9 


ID 








6 


6 


II 








5 





13 


ID 





5 





13 


10 





3 


8 


13 










Digitized by VjOOQ 



IF 



43« 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



1807 Joshua Wuod, Fore»l cloth, 
Jo^ihua Wood, „ „ 

Andrew Ctapperton, Forest doth, 
Robert Walker, baize, 
William Laing, flannel, ... 

j8<>8 joHhua Wood, blankets like Wiltshire, 

W. Ik D. Thomson, Forest cloth, 

Thomas Clapperton, „ „ 

Richard Lees, „ ,, 

W. Sc D. Thomson, ,, ,, 

Robert Walker & Son, „ „ 

Adam Dobson, „ „ 

Hu|(h Sanderson, „ „ 

William Brown, ,, „ 
Richard Lees, duffle, 
Robert Walker & Son, baize, 
James Hallantyne, flannel, 
William Lainj^^, ,, 

l8o<> Joshua Wdod, blankets, imitation Wiltshire, 
Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 
W. & D. Thomson, „ 
ilu^h Sanderson, ,, 
John Gledhill, „ 

Adam Dobson, ,, 

John Gledhill, 

Robert Walker, dressed woollen cloth, 
Joshua Wood, ,, ,, ,, 

Robert Walker & Son, duflle, 

tKio Joshua Wood, blankets, ... 

(ieorf,»'c Mercer & Son, Forest cloth, 
Richard Lees, ,, ,, 

(ffcorge Mercer 8l Son, ,, „ 
Richard Lees, ,, „ 

John Gledhill, 
John Gledhill, 

Cook, Halg, & Co., „ „ 

W, Messer & Co., flannel, 
Joshua Wood, ,, 

iH 1 1 Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 

Ctcorg^ Mercer & Son, „ „ 



Price 


perYcL 


Preouuni. 


s. 


V, 


£ 


s. 


D 


3 


8 


6 








2 


9 


10 








2 


9 


5 








... 




5 








» 


8 


'4 








. . . 




16 








6 


6 


22 








6 


6 


1 1 








5 





18 








5 





4 


ID 





3 


8 


>3 








3 


8 


6 








2 


9 


ID 








2 


9 


5 








4 





10 








2 





8 








I 


8 


6 








I 


4 


5 












ID 








6 


6 


16 


10 





6 


6 


16 


10 





6 


6 


9 








5 





18 








4 





9 


10 





4 





9 


ID 





2 


9 


10 








2 


9 


5 








4 





10 












10 








10 


6 


22 


10 





10 


6 


10 








7 


6 


16 


10 





7 


6 


16 


XO 





6 





9 








3 


8 


13 








3 


8 


5 








... 




H 








... 




12 








7 


6 


22 








7 


6 


II 









Digitized by 



Google 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



439 



1811 



1812 



1813 



1814 
1815 



Adam Dobson, Forest cloth, 

John Gledhill, ,> ,> 

W. & D. Thomson, ,, ,, 

John Gledhill, ,, ,, 

Cook, Haig, & Co., „ ,, 

John Sanderson, „ „ 
Richard Lees, duffle coating, 
Joshua Wood, flannel, 
Walter Messer, ,, 
Joshua Wood, „ 

Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 

James Sime, ,, „ 

Richard Lees, „ ,, 

George Roberts, „ „ 

Henry Sanderson, „ „ 

Henry Sanderson, ,, „ 

Waiter Messer, flannel, ... 

Richard Lees, Forest cloth, ... 

George Roberts, „ „ 

John Gledhill, „ ,, 

Henry Sanderson, „ „ 

Henry Sanderson, „ ,, 

Richard Lees, cassimeres, 

George Roberts, „ 

Walter Messer, flannel, ... 

Walter Messer, „ 

James Watson, lambs'-wool stockings, 

Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 
Richard Lees, cassimeres, 



Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 
Robert Gill & Son, „ 

Richard Lees, cassimeres, 
1816 George Roberts, Forest cloth, 
Robert Gill 8c Son, „ „ 

W. & D. Thomson, „ „ 

Robert Gill & Son, ,, „ 

Walter Messer, flannel, 
W. & D. Thomson, „ 
W. & D. Thomson, ,, 
Walter Messer, ,, 



Price 


per Yd 


. Premium. 


s. 


D. 


£ 


s. 


D. 


6 





'3 


10 





6 





'3 


10 





3 


8 


13 








3 


8 


6 








2 


9 


10 








2 


9 


5 








2 


9 


6 








3 





16 








I 


8 


H 








I 


8 


12 








9 





30 








9 





'5 








7 


6 


22 








7 


6 


1 1 








3 


8 


10 








2 


9 


10 








1 


8 


6 








7 


6 


16 


10 





7 


6 


16 


10 





6 





18 








3 


8 


9 








2 


9 


10 








... 




7 


10 









7 


10 





3 





4 








I 


8 


10 





0. 






3 


10 





7 


6 


18 








10 


6 


7 


10 





9 


6 


22 








8 





9 








10 


6 


'5 








8 





18 








8 





9 








5 


6 


6 








3 


6 


9 








3 





>5 








3 





8 








I 


8 


14 








I 


8 


6 









Digitized by 



Google 



440 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



Price [Xir Yd. Premium. 



1817 Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 
W. & D. Thomson, „ „ 
Henry Sanderson^ ,, ,, 
Waiter Messer, flannel, 

W. & D. Thomson, „ 
Walter Messer, „ 

1818 George Roberts, Forest cloth, 

1819 Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 
George Roberts, „ „ 
Thomas Clapperton, „ „ 
Robert Walker, „ „ 

J. & H. Brown, „ ,, 

Henry Sanderson, dressed woollen cloth, 

Richard Lees, milled cassimeres, 

W. & D. Thomson, flannel, 

Walter Messer, „ 

W. & D. Thomson. „ 

W. & D. Thomson, ,, 

1820 Robert Gill & Son, Forest cloth, ... 
Alexander Sanderson, ,, ,, 
Robert Walker, ,, „ 
Robert Paterson, „ „ 
Henry Sanderson, „ „ 

J. & H. Brown, „ „ 

Henry Sanderson, „ „ 

W. & D. Thomson, flannel, 
Walter Messer, ,, 

VV. & D. Thomson, ,, 
Robert Cairns, ,, 

1821 Robert Walker, Forest cloth, 
Alexander Sanderson, ,, 
Henry Sanderson, „ 
Robert Paterson, ,, 
Henry Sanderson, ,, 

J. & H. Brown, ,, 

W. & D. Thomson, flannel, 



W. & A. Hislop, Iambs*-wool stockings, 



s. 


D. 


£ 


s. 


D 


9 


6 


«5 








9 


6 


6 








3 


6 


9 








3 





'5 














8 








I 


8 


H 








8 





18 








9 


6 


20 








8 





18 








8 





9 








5 


6 


12 








5 


6 


6 








3 


6 


9 








... 




'5 








3 





10 








3 





ID 








I 


8 


10 








1 


4 


8 








8 





18 








8 





9 








5 


6 


12 








5 


6 


6 








5 


6 


6 








3 


6 


9 








3 


6 


5 








3 





»5 








3 





8 








I 


8 


6 








I 


4 


5 








8 





18 








8 





9 








5 


6 


12 








5 


6 


6 








3 


6 


9 








3 


6 


5 








3 





8 








I 


8 


6 








1 


4 


5 












8 









Digitized by 



Google 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



.441 



Price per Yd, Premium. 



1822 Richard Lees, Forest cloth, 
Robert Walker, „ „ 

J. & H. Brown, „ „ 

Richard Lees, „ „ 

Henry Sanderson, „ „ 

Robert Paterson, „ „ 

Thomas M'Gill, „ 

Henry Sanderson, „ „ 

J. & H. Brown, „ „ 

W. & D. Thomson, flannel, 
James Watson, stockings, 

1823 Robert Walker, Forest cloth, 
Henry Sanderson, „ ,, 
Alex. Sanderson & Son, ,, ,, 
Robert Walker, „ ,, 

J. & H. Brown, „ „ 

Henry Sanderson, ,, ,, 

J. & H. Brown, „ „ 

Robert Paterson, ,, „ 

J. & H. Brown, „ ,, 

Francis Inglis, jun., flannel, 
W. & A. Hislop, stockings, 

1824 Robert Walker, Forest cloth 
Alexander Sanderson & Son, Forest cloth, 
Robert Walker, 

Henry Sanderson, ,, „ 

James Roberts, ,, „ 

Henry Sanderson, ,, „ 

Francis Inglis, sen., flannel, 
Francis Inglis, jun., ,, 
Francis Inglis, jun., blankets, 
J. Watson & Sons, stockings, 

1825 Richard Lees, Forest clbth, 
Robert Walker, „ 
Robert Walker, ,, 

W. & D. Thomson, ,, 
James Roberts, „ 

Robert Walker, „ 

Francis Inglis, sen., blankets, 
Francis Ingli.s, jun., flannel, 



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442 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



1825 Francis Inglis, sen., flannel, 
W. & A. Hislop, stockings, 

1826 Robert Walker, Forest cloth, 
Robert Walker, „ „ 
Robert Gill & Son, Forest cloth, 
Robert Walker, „ „ 
Francis Inglis, jun., blankets, 
Francis Inglis, jun., flannels, 
Francis Inglis, jun., „ 
W. & A. Hislop, stockings, 

1827 J. & H. Brown, Forest cloth, 
Robert Walker, „ ,, 
Robert Gill & Son, „ ,, 
J. & H. Brown, „ ,, 
J. & W. Cochrane, extra premium, 
James Roberts, „ „ 
J. & H. Brown, Forest cloth, 
Robert Walker, ,, „ 
Richard Lees, extra premium, 
Robert Gill & Son, extra premium, 
Henry Sanderson, ,, ,, 
Richard Lees, dreadnoug^ht, 
J. & H. Brown, „ extra premium, 
J. & H. Brown, „ 
John Gledhill, „ 
Francis Inglis, sen., flannel, 
W. & A. Hislop, stockings, 

1828 Henry Sanderson, broadcloth, 
Thomas Mercer, „ 
Robert Walker, Forest cloth, 
J. & H. Brown, „ „ 
James Rutherford, „ „ 
Robert Gill & Son, ,, „ 
Robert Walker, „ „ 
J. & \^. Cochrane, „ ,, 
J. & H. Brown, „ „ 
Robert Gill & Son, „ 
J. & W. Cochrane, „ „ 
Robert Walker, „ „ 
Henry Sanderson, dreadnought, 
Richard Lees, ,, 



Price 


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Premium. 


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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



443 



Price per Yd. Premium. 



1828 Henry Sanderson, dreadnought, 
Thomas Mercer, cassimeres, 
Francis Inglis, sen., blankets, 
Francis Inglis, jun., flannel, 
George Roberts, jun., ,, 
Francis Inglis, sen., ,, 
George Roberts, jun., ,, 

W. & A. Hislop, stockings, 

1829 Richard Lees, Forest cloth, ... 
J. & W. Cochrane, „ „ 
James Hunter, ,, „ 
James Rutherford, „ ,, 

J. & W. Cochrane, „ ,. 

Robert Walker, „ 

Richard Lees, „ „ 

J. & W. Cochrane, ,, ,, 

Robert Walker, 

Robert Gill & Son, 

William Roberts, „ „ 

Henry Sanderson, „ „ 

Robert Gill ^ Son, dreadnought, ... 

Richard Lees, ,, 

Robert Gill & Son, cassimeres, 

Henry Sanderson, broad cloth, extra premium, 

John & Robert Inglis, blankets, 

Henry Sanderson, ,, 

George Roberts, jun., flannel, 

J. & F. Inglis, ,, 

J. & R. Inglis, ,, 

George Roberts, jun. , ,, 

W. & A. Hislop, stockings, 

1830 Robert & George Lees, Forest cloth, 
J. & H. Brown, ,, 
James Roberts, ,, 
J. & H. Brown, ,, 
Robert & George Lees, ,, 
J. & H. Brown, ,, 
Henry Sanderson, , , 
William Roberts, ,, 
Robert & George Lees, ,, 
Robert & George Lees, dreadnought. 



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444 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



extra premium, 



extra premium, 



1830 Andrew Dickson, flannel, 
Thomas Davidson, „ ... ... ... 3 

The judges considered these flannels to be the 
finest ever produced in Scotland. 
Georg'e Roberts, flannel, 

George Roberts, „ 

Robert Frier, „ 

William Frier, ,. 

Francis Inglis, ,. 

Andrew Dickson, ., 

George Roberts, 
John & Robert Inglis „ 
Thomas Davidson, ,, ,, ,, 

Henry Sanderson, ,. „ ,, 

John & Robert Inglis, blankets, 17s per pair, 
Henry Sanderson, ,, 17s ,, 

1831 Robert & George Lees, Forest cloth, 
J. & W. Cochrane, 
Robert & George Lees, ,, ,, 



William Roberts, ,, ,, 

Henry Ballantyne, ,, ,, extra premium, 

Robert & George Lees, dreadnought, 

>> »> >> 

,, „ cassimeres, 

Dickson & Co., flannel, 2 yards wide, 
Thomas Davidson, flannel, 2 yards wide, extra 

premium, 
Thomas Davidson, flannel, li yard wide, 
Dickson & Co., „ i „ ,, 

Henry Sanderson, ,, i „ „ 
Robert & George Lees, 2 doz. woollen shawls, 

30s each, 
Robert & George Lees, 2 doz. woollen shawls, 

15s each, 
Francis Inglis, 12 pairs blankets, 24s per pair, 
Henry Sanderson, 12 pairs „ 17s per pair, 
F. & T. Inglis, 12 pairs ,, 17s per pair, 
W. & A. Hislop, 6 doz. pairs men's lambs'-wool 
stockings, 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



445 



1832 Robert & George Lees, Forest cloth, 



Henry Ballantyne, Forest cloth, extra premium, 
William Roberts, „ „ ,, „ 

Robert & George Lees, dreadnought, 
Andrew Dickson & Co., flannel, 
Robert & George Lees, 2 doz. soft shawls, 

1833 Robert & George Lees, Forest cloth, 
J. & H. Brown, 
Robert & George Lees, „ 



William Roberts, „ 

J. & W. Cochrane, drab cloth, 

J. & H. Brown, ,, ,, 

Robert & George Lees, milled cassimeres, 

Henry Sanderson, flannel, 

Robert & George Lees, 2 doz. soft woollen shawls, 

1834 J. & H. Brown, Forest cloth, Scotch wool, 
Robert Paterson, „ „ ,, ,, 
J. & H. Brown, drab cloth, 

»> >» if 

„ dreadnought, 

»» >» . 

„ twill stuff, 

„ Orleans stripe, 

„ flannel 

1835 J, & H. Brown, checked trouser stuff, 

No premiums being offered for woollen goods in 1835, the 
above exhibit was shown in what was termed the special article 
class. 



Price 


per Yd. 


Premium. 


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SECTION IV.— EDUCATIONAL. 



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CHAPTER I. 

The Parish School. 

THE origin and early history of the progress of education 
in Galashiels are involved in obscurity. The only avail- 
able sources of information are confined to casual 
references contained in the minutes of meetings of the heritors 
and Kirk Session. In some instances the name of the school- 
master is only mentioned in connection with his duty as clerk 
to one or other of these bodies. In all probability the original 
Parish School would be at Lindean, and would be transferred to 
Galashiels along with the church. 

The first schoolmaster of whom any record exists was George 
1696 Blaikie, the date of his appointment being i6th November, 1696. 
During his term of office the school met, for a time at least, in 
the kirk, as the Session is found 

"Taking to consideration the great abuse and many prejudices which do 
happen by the reason of the school being kepped in the Kirk of Gala, did 
unanimously by vote order it to be held in the schoolhouse, and to continue no 
longer in the Kirk." 

For what reason a vacancy occurred is not recorded, but on 
1698 the 28th November, 1698, the Session appointed George Adam, 
schoolmaster, to be their clerk, who was evidently newly elected 
to the office of schoolmaster. 
1706 In 1706 his name appears as a witness to a Seal of Cause 

granted by Sir James Scott of Gala to the Incorporation of 
Fleshers. Nothing further is known concerning him, nor for 
what reason he demitted office; but he was succeeded by James 
Wilson. In those days the office was poorly remunerated, as 
Mr Wilson lodged a claim against the Session for some allow- 
ance on account of having officiated as precentor at three 
Sacraments. It is also recorded in the heritors' minutes that, — 

449 CI 



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450 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

''They appoint ten shillings to be paid to James Wilson, late schoolmaster in 
Galashiels, now in distress with old age and infirmity, for having formerly 
acted as clerk at several meetings.** 

1725 On the 23rd of May, 1725, James Blaikie was chosen by 

the heritors to be schoolmaster; the Kirk Session also appointed 
him to be their clerk. Little or no improvement was made in 
the matter of salary, as, after holding office a short time, the 
minister, the Rev. Henry Davidson, thus wrote to a friend, — 

^* Mr Blaikie, schoolmaster in this place, is recommended to the school of 
Inverkeithing, now vacant. If you have any interest with any person con- 
cerned in that affair, the employment of it in his favour would be an act of 
charity to him and his family, the school here being exceedingly low." 

The schoolhouse itself was evidently quite in keeping with 
1740 this miserable state of affairs, as on the i8th January, 1740, the 
heritors visited the schoolhouse, and were convinced that it 
greatly required a new ^*theekinV* also a new chimney in 
connection with the kitchen. Mr Blaikie was appointed to 
collect the assessment from the various heritors, to defray the 
cost of the repairs. 
1775 No further mention is made of the school till 1775, when it 

is recorded that there were about one hundred scholars in 
average attendance. At that date the schoolmaster's salary 
amounted to ;^6, 7s 2d annually and a house. No reference is 
made to the amount drawn as fees. 
1 78 1 In 1 78 1 Mr Blaikie died after fifty-six years service, and 

was succeeded by John Grame from Ayton. During his term 
of office the school and schoolhouse had fallen into such a 
ruinous condition that the heritors found it necessary to erect 
new buildings. Plans were prepared, and, till the new school 
was ready, the heritors advised Mr Grame to take the scholars 
into the church, should he think it more beneficial for their 
health. At that time the salary had been raised to £y^ 9s 8d, 
which was paid by the heritors in the following proportions: — 
Gala, jC4j is lod; Fernielee, £1^ 4s 6d; Faldonside, i6s 4d; 
Middlestead, 17s lod; Bridgehaugh, 9s 2d. As was customary, 
Mr Grame also filled the office of Session clerk, but after his 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



451 



death it was discovered that he had utterly neglected his duty in 
this respect, not a single meeting of Session having been recorded 
in the minute book. On investigation, it was also found that no 
marriages had been registered; the list of births and burials 
were also very incomplete. 

179^ Mr Grame died in 1791, and was succeeded by William 

Fairbairn from Bowden. In accordance with the desire expressed 
by a number of the parishioners, he received the appointment on 
condition that Latin be taught for five years at a fee of four 
shillings a scholar per quarter. In the event of fewer than twelve 
scholars taking advantage of this opportunity, he was not bound 
to continue it. Mr Fairbairn was not a classical scholar, but was 
acknowledged to be an expert in mathematics. If his pupils 
could read the Bible and Barriers Collection properly, he con- 
sidered they were quite competent to read any author in the 
English language. 

At this time the fees were as follows, — Reading, one 
shilling and sixpence per quarter; writing and arithmetic, six- 
pence each additional. For all subjects beyond decimal fractions 
the amount of fees was a matter of agreement between the parent 
and schoolmaster. The school hours were from seven to nine 
A.M., and five hours thereafter during the day, from the ist of 
April till the autumn vacation, and after harvest up to the end 
of March, from nine a.m., to continue five hours at the discretion 
of the master. 

1794 In 1794 Mr Fairbairn petitioned the heritors for an addition 

to his salary. This they refused, but nominated him to be their 
clerk and collector of poor rates, with the emoluments pertaining 
thereto. In 1798 his salary was raised to jCiOy but this advance 
was limited to three years. In 1803 the salary was again fixed at 
/ three hundred and fifty merks, with two bolls of oatmeal, 

Linlithgow measure, in lieu of a garden. Shortly afterwards 
another revisal of fees took place, viz., reading, one shilling and 
sixpence, with writing two shillings and sixpence, and sixpence 
additional for arithmetic, payable quarterly in advance, in place 
of the former practice of paying at the end of the term. 




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452 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1806 In 1806 it was found that the school and schoolhouse, which 

had been erected in 178 1, had become ruinous and necessitated the 
erection of new buildings. The amount of accommodation for 
the schoolmaster was confined to a kitchen with a room above it. 
In 1808 a garden for the use of the schoolmaster was also provided, 
extending to one fourth of a Scots acre, situated immediately 
behind the school. It cost jC^^j i8s 2d, the amount being 
settled by arbitration. 

An incident which occurred at this time is told to the 
following effect, — One afternoon when the school was dismissed, 
Mr Fairbairn remarked to one of the boys, ^*John, tell your 
mother I am coming along to-morrow afternoon to drink a cup 
of tea with her." The next morning he asked the boy if he had 
delivered his message, to which he replied in the affirmative. 
'* What did your mother say?*' was the next query; the boy hung 
his head and made no response. On the question being repeated, 
he managed to blurt out, ^*Ma mother said 'e was a nasty, 
fashious body, and she wad far raither no' he troubled wi' 'e.** 

1810 In 1810 Mr Fairbairn died, and his son William was 

appointed interim schoolmaster and parish clerk till the following 
term of Martinmas. The interim teacher was born in Gala- 
shiels on the 8th June, 1792, and when he left the town 
he betook himself to the study of medicine, and passed the 
Navy Medical Board in 181 2. He subsequently served on 
board the ** Saturn *' on the West India station, and afterwards 
on the ** Superb'' at the bombardment of Algiers in 1816, 
being promoted to the position of surgeon of that vessel. On 
the surrender of Napoleon in the preceding year, Dr Fairbairn 
had the honour of an introduction to the Emperor, and break- 
fasted with him, along with the other officers of the ** Superb." 
Returning to Edinburgh, he graduated in 1819, and shortly 
afterwards resigned his appointment in the navy. He became a 
Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in 1833, and was for 
a lengthened period medical officer to the House of Refuge. 
He was cousin to William Fairbairn, the eminent Manchester 
engineer, who for a term attended the Parish School at Gala- 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 453 

shiels under his uncle, and was also cousin to Sir Peter 
Fairbairn of Leeds. Mr Fairbairn died in Edinburgh in 1862, 
aged seventy years. 

During the period William Fairbairn officiated as interim 
schoolmaster, advertisements were inserted in the Caledonian 
Mercury^ Edinburgh Evening Couranty and Kelso Mail^ 
requesting applications for the office. The candidates had to be 
qualified to teach English, writing, arithmetic, book-keeping, 
mensuration, Latin, French, and church music. A short leet 
of three was chosen, and, after being examined by the Presby- 
tery, the following report was handed to the heritors, — 

''Mr Simpson, Newlands, was by far the best qualified for teaching the 
languages, but was inferior in the practical parts of mathematics and 
mensuration. Mr Fyshe, from Linton, with less acquaintance with Latin and 
French, writes an admirable hand, is well acquainted with the common and 
higher branches of arithmetic, mensuration, and land surveying, and Mr 
Faterson from Fans also made a very good appearance in many respects." 

The heritors considered that the qualifications of Mr Fyshe 
were the most suitable for the class of scholars attending the 
school, and he was accordingly elected. 

The new teacher had not been long installed till he called 
the attention of the heritors to the fact that the scale of fees 
charged in the Parish School at Galashiels was lower than that 
of similar schools in the district. This being found to be the 
case, they were raised to two shillings and sixpence for reading 
per quarter, and an additional sixpence each for writing and 
arithmetic. Owing to the success attendant upon the labours of 
Mr Fyshe, his house soon proved too small to accommodate the 
number of boarders that came to reside with him. He therefore 
made application to the heritors for increased accommodation, 
and they agreed to add a parlour and barrack-room. The 
work was executed by Thomson & Stirling at a cost of ;^ 154. 

Owing to overcrowding, it was also found necessary to 
enlarge the school, and an addition of fifteen feet was added to 
its length. Mr Scott of Gala granted for the purpose the stones 
of the old building called the ** Hunter's Ha','' which occupied 



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454 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

the site of the proposed extension. The garden was also laid 
out and several small buildings erected, towards the cost of 
which Mr Fyshe offered to contribute £20. This offer, how- 
ever, the heritors declined, on the ground that *' they desired to 
encourage him by every means in their power, and they take 
this method of expressing their satisfaction with his conduct.'* 

1819 In 1819 the following advertisement appeared in a provincial 

newspaper, which shows the condition of educational matters in 
the town at that period, — 

''The school of Galashiels was this day examined by a committee of the 
Presbytery of Selkirk in presence of a great number of the heritors, clergy; 
ladies and gentlemen of the town and neighbourhood, and also from Edinburgh. 
The scholars, amounting to upwards of 137, were exercised in their knowledge 
of English, grammar, spelling, reciting, Latin, Greek, French, British history, 
antiquities, modern geography, mathematics with their application to mensura- 
tion, plain and spherical trigonometry, algebra, mechanics, etc., astronomy and 
use of the globes, arithmetic, book-keeping, and writing. In all these branches 
they showed such a proficiency as did great credit to Mr Fyshe, the teacher. 
The company were gratified by the whole performance, and were fully satisfied 
that Mr Fyshe is well entitled to the public favour which he has so long enjoyed. 
Such of the parents and guardians of the children boarded and taught by Mr 
Fyshe begged to add their recommendation of that gentleman to that of the 
committee, and expressed the highe^satisfaction with the healthful appearance 
of the children, and their progress in education. — George Thomson, moderator; 
Robert Douglas, min. of Galashiels; W. Balfour, min., Bowden; John 
Thomson, min., Maxton; John Cormack, min.. Stow; Nicol Milne of Faldon- 
side; James Henderson, min. of the Associate congregation; George Craig. 

N.B. — Mr F. can at present accommodate one or two more boarders. — 
Terms — Thirty guineas per annum, everything included." 

In a note attached to the above notice it is stated that 

'* This seminary is rapidly rising in usefulness and public favour. Many 
gentlemen in Edinburgh having children boarded and educated in it speak in 
terms of unqualified approbation of the zeal and ability of the teacher, as well 
as of his mild and fatherly system of discipline, and his attention to the health 
and morals of his pupils/* 

1825 In 1825 Mr Fyshe received an addition to his salary, raising 

it to ;^30. 



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Alexander Williamson 



William Dunlop 



Robert Fyshb 



Thomas Fairley 



Thomas Bain 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 455 

To the older generation of the natives of Galashiels, the 
Parish School and its teacher, Mr Fyshe, form one of the out- 
standing memories of their boyhood. The curriculum of the 
Parish School seventy years ago can compare favourably with 
that of any institution at the present day, notwithstanding 
all the advantages that the modern schools possess. But in 
other directions the change is ver)^ marked, and the manners of the 
teachers and the methods employed in teaching in those days are 
utterly unknown to the present generation. With the view of 
affording an idea of the Parish School and school life in Gala- 
shiels about sixty years ago, the following extract is taken from 
a brochure written from personal observation and experience by 
the late Adam Cochrane, Fernieknowe, — 

"Any one who had been a pupil there can remember the barn-like structure. 
The original part measured 27 feet long by 18 feet wide, the addition being 15 
feet long, and the same width as the original. In adding the new part, an arch 
about ten feet wide was cut through the centre of the old gable, forming a 
sort of alcove, containing the fireplace, wherein presided the high priest of 
this temple of learning — Mr Fyshe. The other end was occupied by the 
assistant, and contained the maps, globes, blackboard, &c. The windows 
in the south-east side were large, and, as the site for the school had been cut 
out of a bank, the sills were almost level with the garden. A smaller window 
occupied the opposite side, in front of which stood a long-legged desk, which 
contained the tawse, school roll, and other odds and ends. Short double desks 
stood at right angles to the windowed side for the use of the older pupils, 
while along the other side ran rows of forms on which the smaller boys sat; 
while the girls occupied the modern portion. At one period of the school's 
history there were about seventy boarders, but after the death of Mrs Fyshe 
the number of these had fallen off, and latterly did not exceed half a score. 

Mr Fyshe was dapper in figure, with a clean-shaven fresh coloured face, 
shaggy eyebrows, and a firm and determined looking mouth. His broadcloth 
upper garments were well fitting, his head was surmounted with a wig of a 
reddish brown colour, and his ruffled shirt front was always liberally besprinkled 
with snuff. From his fob depended a heavy bunch of keys and seals, giving 
him an air of solid respectability. He spoke the vernacular in all its purity, 
and, as he strutted, tawse in hand, the length of the school at its opening, his 
whole appearance, though undersized, appeared to his pupils almost awe- 
inspiring. 

The teaching of the junior classes was carried on while the master was 
engaged in the making and mending of the quill pens, which were then in 
universal use. While so engaged, if anything occurred to ruffle his temper, he 



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456 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

would exclaim to the boy whose pen was for the time engaging his attention, 

* Where got ye'd, did 'e pu'd oot o' 'er mother's docker ?' ending most likely 
in dabbing the quill end-wise on the desk and tossing it into the fire. As the 
day progressed, the senior classes had their turn. The reading lesson was 
squeaked, grunted, or mumbled, and not much fault was found unless the 
reader came to a full stop, when down came the tawse, and after the 
confusion consequent on the changing of a place — trapping it was termed — 
the work of the class proceeded. Spellings and meanings of words were part 
of the English lesson, which went on amid the abuse and lashing on the part 
of the master, and blubbering on the part of the pupils, culminating sometimes 
in something nearly approaching a riot. ' Lubbert, dunderhead* were the 
usual epithets shouted by the master, while the tawse raised clouds of dust from 
the jackets of pupils as tall as himself. He was wont to characterise them as 

* only fit to thrash a barn for a wife and six bairns,' and that * a crap o* turnips 
might be raised in the stoor they carried on their backs.' Those pupils not 
engaged in the class, who ought to have been busy preparing their lessons, 
were busy gambling at odds or evens for cherry stones, trafficking in knives, 
tops, marbles, &c., or engaged in adjusting the preliminaries of a fistic 
encounter after school hours. Suddenly a shout of ' Silence!' would be heard, 
and the tawse were sent whizzing toward a group of boys. If the boy specially 
wanted was freckled, the order was given, * Bring up the tawse, spurtled face;' 
if his hair was red it was ' Gingerbread,' or if his father happened to be a 
gardener * Cabbage and leeks' was the epithet applied towards him. The 
culprit took up the tawse, received his pandies, and things went on as before. 

There was also a night school taught by an assistant, but the time was 
principally devoted to playing practical jokes upon the teacher, a favourite one 
being to snufF out the candles at a preconcerted signal. There were very few 
who showed any taste for learning, and respect for the teacher was utterly 
unknown. Of manners there were none, and in the school no opportunity 
was given to profit by example. *ril learn 'e manners, 'e vulgar brutes,' was 
addressed to two girls, as he belaboured their heads, who had fallen out over 
some little matter, one of whom he overheard saying * A'll tell Fyshe. ' 

The quarterly collection of fees was one of the incidents that varied the 
routine. The master, accompanied by one of the boys who acted as clerk, went 
round receiving the fees, and from the manner his trouser pockets bulged 
toward the close of the collection, the amount impressed the pupils as being 
something enormous. 

Visitors turned up occasionally and gave a little variety to the daily 
monotony. Mr Fyshe, being the Session clerk, was entrusted with the duty 
of dispensing small sums to tramps and others in need. On a rap being heard, 
the door was opened by the nearest boy, who received the message. * Somebody 
wants 'e,' *Eh! whae is't, is't a man?' *No,' *Is't a puir woman?' * Yes,' *Tell 
her to be off about her business ! ' If the visitor was importunate, sometimes 
a scene occurred, which to the scholars proved entertaining by way of a change." 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 457 

Such is a graphic picture of the Parish School in the earlier 
days of the town's history, and under such conditions those 
received their education whose names are inseparably connected 
with the growth and prosperity of Galashiels. 

Notwithstanding the hardships attendant upon their school 
life, in course of time the boys forgot their troubles and came to 
regard their old master with kindlier feelings. As the outcome 
1839 of this change, on the 20th April, 1839, about fifty old pupils 
entertained Mr Fyshe to dinner, which took place in the Com- 
mercial Inn. The chair was occupied by Alexander Sanderson, 
Deacon of the Manufacturers' Corporation for that year. In 
the course of his remarks he alluded to the excellence of parish 
schools in general, but particularly to the Galashiels Academy. 
He concluded a neat and appropriate speech by presenting Mr 
Fyshe with a service of silver plate of the value of seventy 
guineas, which bore the following inscription, — 

" Presented to Mr Robert Fyshe, parochial schoolmaster of Galashiels, by 
his former pupils, as a token of their esteem and respect for his zeal and 
diligence as a teacher during the period of twenty-eight years." 

1845 At length in 1845 Mr Fyshe was stricken down by 

paralysis, and he caused a* letter to be sent to the heritors, 
stating that he was desirous of resigning his position as parish 
schoolmaster, and requesting them to state what terms they 
were prepared to offer in the event of his so doing. They 
replied by requesting Mr Fyshe to state his own terms, and they 
would consider them. Mr Fyshe then offered to retire on being 
allowed to retain his salary of ^30, together with the school- 
house and garden, or a money payment of ;^40 per annum, 
which, he stated, would enable him, together with his private 
means, to retire on an annual income of ;^iio. Eventually the 
heritors offered ^35, which was accepted; and the resignation 

1849 took effect on the 14th September, 1849. He did not long 
survive, as his death took place on the 19th April, 1850, in the 
sixty-first year of his age. 

During the latter years of Mr Fyshe's connection with the 
school the work was to a large extent carried on by assistants, 



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458 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

amongst whom were Mr Rodger, who became his son-in-law; 
Mr Riddell, son of James Riddell, tailor in Galashiels; Rev. 
Mr Rennie, who afterwards occupied the honourable position of 
Moderator of the United Presbyterian Synod; and Mr Morrison, 
who was appointed interim teacher on the death of Mr Fyshe. 

In filling up the vacancy, Mr Kemp from Dyce received 
the appointment on the recommendation of Mr Gordon, H.M. 
Inspector of Schools. However, after being appointed clerk to 
the heritors and everything had been done agreeably to his 
wishes, he wrote declining to come to Galashiels, as he had 
secured a preferable appointment elsewhere. 

Under these circumstances, the services of the interim teacher 
were retained, and the Rev. K. M. Phin, the parish minister, 
was empowered to secure a suitable teacher. At a meeting 
of heritors Mr Phin produced testimonials from J. M. Pollock, 
one of the masters in the Merchiston Academy, and also from 
Robert Scott, who had been one of the masters in the West 
End Academy, Aberdeen. Mr Pollock received the appoint- 
ment, and was elected clerk to the heritors. At that time 

1850 there were 150 scholars in attendance, but shortly afterwards 
the number was increased to 190, when Mr Pollock found 
himself unable to manage the school with efficiency. He 
had been paying ;^30 per annum for the services of an assistant, 
but, in consequence of the lowness of the fees, his income was 
inadequate to meet such an outlay. He made complaint to the 
heritors, who, on investigation, found that the average fee at 
Lauder was five shillings and threepence; Melrose, five shillings 
and sixpence; Selkirk, eight shillings and sevenpence; while in 
Galashiels it only amounted to three shillings and sixpence per 
quarter. 

Owing to the increasing number of scholars, further 
accommodation was urgently required, and Mr Pollock suggested 
a plan at once convenient and economical. This was to take in 
the adjoining byre and open a means of communication through 
the mutual wall, but this novel idea the heritors declined to 

1854 entertain. In 1854 another revisal of fees took place, which were 




HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 459 

now raised to, — reading, two shillings and sixpence; writing, three 
shillings and sixpence; with arithmetic, four shillings; with 
grammar, composition, history, and geography, four shillings 
and sixpence; with mathematics, five shillings; and with Latin, 
Greek, or French, seven shillings and sixpence per quarter. 

1856 In 1856 Mr Pollock received a more lucrative appointment 

at Falkirk, and sent in his resignation. Some little difficulty 
being experienced in securing a suitable successor, the 
Rev. K. M. Phin opened the school for a few hours daily in 
order to keep the scholars together till the vacancy was filled 
up. Candidates having been advertised for, forty-two applications 
were received, and, previous to making the appointment, the 
heritors specified the emoluments, fees, hours of teaching, and 
holidays. They arranged that the salary and fees remain as 
already fixed, the schoolmaster being entitled to charge sixpence 
yearly from each scholar for coals. The hours of teaching were 
to extend from nine a.m. to one p.m., and from two to four p.m., 
except on Saturdays, when the time only extended from nine to 
eleven a.m., and the total number of holidays throughout the 
year was not to exceed six weeks. 

The heritors appointed Alexander Williamson, M.A., from 
St Andrews, to the mastership. At that time Mr Williamson 
had completed his theological curriculum, and latterly obtained 
license from the Presbytery of Selkirk. 

Owing to the influx of scholars from that portion of the town 
situated in the Melrose parish, the school soon proved too small; 
but, owing to the circumstances, the heritors declined to provide 
any further accommodation. At the same time they informed 
Mr Williamson that if he could procure subscriptions sufficient to 
make a suitable addition to the school they would favourably 
consider the idea of an enlargement. At the next meeting of 
heritors a deputation consisting of William Paterson and Arthur 
Dickson, manufacturers, and Alexander Combat, merchant, 
appeared, and produced a list of subscriptions amounting to ;^50 
for the purpose of enlarging the school. Consideration was 
adjourned, and at the following meeting the deputation, with the 



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460 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

addition of Adam L. Cochrane, manufacturer, again came 
forward and submitted a plan estimated to cost ;{I^i30. The 
heritors declined to entertain the proposed building scheme, but 
Major Scott of Gala offered to subscribe £30^ provided the cost 
of the proposed addition did not exceed ;{I^ioo. At the next 
meeting the fund had risen to jCioSy and the heritors requested 
the deputation to procure a suitable plan for the site. This 
they declined to do, and the question was again dropped. 

1859 ^^ ^^59 ^^^ heritors made the discovery that they had been 

paying a larger salary to Mr Williamson than their powers 
warranted, and it was accordingly reduced to jC^7y lis gd, the 
deficiency being made up by a voluntary subscription amongst 
themselves. 

A few years afterwards, in consequence of legislation, 
the heritors increased Mr Williamson *s salary to jC$Oj he being 
obliged to secure the services of a female assistant to give 
instruction in industrial and household training, an additional 
sum of ;^5 being voted by the heritors to assist in that object. 

1864 In 1864 the necessity for a further extension of the school 

had become clamant, and a petition, together with a list of 
subscriptions amounting to ;^290, iis, were laid before the 
heritors, requesting that an addition should be made to the 
school. Mr Plummer of Sunderland Hall moved that nothing 
be done till the Parliamentary report on parochial schools was 
presented. The Rev. K. M. Phin moved an amendment, ^^that 
the heritors accept the subscriptions, and resolve to add a 
further sum of ;^300 to provide suitable accommodation;'' but 
this did not find a seconder. 

When the Government report was received in the following 
year, it referred to the overcrowded state of the school, and gave 
warning that further grants might be withheld unless it was 
enlarged. No attention having been paid to the threat, the grant 
was accordingly withheld the year following. Major Scott 
now increased his subscription toward the enlargement of the 
school to ;{^i05, thus raising the fund to £39$^ iis, and the 
heritors, profiting by the lesson they had received, made a virtue 




HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 461 

of necessity, and erected an addition to the existing building 
upon the east end of the school playground. 

^872 After the passing of the Education Act in 1872, the school 

came under the jurisdiction of the School Board for the landward 
portion of the parish of Galashiels. The first board consisted of 
the following members, viz., — Charles Scott Plummer of Sun- 
derland Hall, chairman; Robert Sanderson, Knowepark; Arthur 
Dickson, Wheatlands; David Brotherstone, grain merchant; 
and James Stalker, writer, Galashiels; James Smail, banker, 
being elected clerk and treasurer. 

The schoolmaster's salary was fixed at ;^50, with the 
addition of jCs to aid in providing a salary for a teacher of 
sewing. According to the Government requirements at that 
time, it was found that there existed accommodation for 260 
scholars. The fees were revised and fixed at from 3s to 6s per 
quarter, with an addition of is extra for Latin, Greek, or French. 
On this footing, Mr Williamson paid the salaries of the sewing 
mistress and four pupil-teachers, he receiving any grants which 
they might earn. 

1875 On the 2nd September, 1875, Mr Williamson died, and 

George Menzies, from Ladhope School, was engaged in his 
place. Mr Menzies was a native of the town, and, according to 
the terms of his engagement, was to receive the whole fees 
and grants, but he was bound to employ a sufficient staff of 
pupil-teachers, besides a lady teacher at a salary of £6^, and 
also to provide fuel and light when required. On the 23rd 
November, 1880, Mr Menzies requested the Board to make 
application on his behalf to the Education Department for a 
pension, on the score of failing health. The Department, how- 
ever, refused to entertain the proposal, and on the 17th Decem- 
ber, 1 88 1, Mr Menzies resigned. 

1882 He was succeeded on the 5th January, 1882, by Robert 

Beveridge, from Castle Douglas, on whose appointment the 
scale of fees was again raised, the following being the various 
rates, viz., — Standard L, 3d; U., 4d; HL, 4^d; IV., sd; V., 
5^d; VL, 6d per week, no family being charged more than one 



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462 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1889 shilling. In 1889 the logical result of a compulsory system of 
education took effect in the abolition of fees, and after protracted 
negotiations between the Burgh and Landward Boards, the 
school, which had been extended in 1890 to accommodate 450 
scholars at a cost of £2^00^ was transferred to the Burgh School 

1895 Board in 1895. 

Kennedy's School. 

During the latter years of Mr Fairbairn's reign as parish 
schoolmaster another seminary was found necessary. Dr 
Douglas had two sons of school age, Robert and George, 
whom he wished to be educated at home. On account of Mr 
Fairbairn not being a classical scholar, this desire could not be 
gratified, in so far at least as the Parish School was concerned. 
In these circumstances, Dr Douglas waited upon those in the 
village who were in a better position, and persuaded them 
not only to send a portion of their family to a proposed new 
school, but also to subscribe something extra to the fees, so 
as to provide a suitable salary for the teacher. After all 
arrangements had been made, Dr Douglas selected as teacher 
Mr Ross Kennedy, a student of divinity from Lesmahagow, who 
opened the school in the ground floor of the Cloth Hall. 
The venture proved successful; the room was nearly filled. 
New books were introduced, — Goldsmith's History of Rome^ 
Ossians Poems ^ and Scott's Beauties being among them. Mr 
Kennedy procured them second-hand from Edinburgh, and 
a week seldom passed but one of the scholars was sent over to 
John Young, the carrier, for the usual parcel. The parents 
complained regarding the multiplicity of books, but to their 
complaints Mr Kennedy turned a deaf ear, and pursued the even 
tenor of his way. 

Regarding either the date of the opening or the ultimate 
fate of this school, there remains no record. It is probable that 
1797 it flourished between 1797 and 18 10, when, at the advent of 
Robert Fyshe, the necessity for its existence ceased, and at 
the first opportunity its doors were closed and the pupils 
transferred to the Parish School, 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 463 

School for Deaf and Dumb. 

1817 Ini8i7 another scholastic institution of a different nature 

existed in the village, but nothing is known regarding it save 
the following notice, which appeared in a contemporary 
newspaper, — 

'* Mr James Hunter in Galashiels has under his charge a deaf and dumb 
pupil, who is attested by the Re^. Dr Douglas, Messrs George Craig and 
John Paterson, writers, and others of the most respectable inhabitants of that 
town, to have made great progress in the elementary branches of education, 
in reading, writing, and arithmetic. 

The said pupil was lately examined at Selkirk before the magistrates of 
the burgh, Justices of Peace, and minister of the parish, who have expressed 
their unqualified approbation of the ability of the teacher and the progress of the 
pupil; and they accordingly recommend Mr Hunter to the attention of the 
public, as a discreet, intelligent, able, and successful teacher of the deaf 
and dumb." 

The Subscription School. 

This institution was erected by public subscription in the 
centre of that ground now known as the Market Square, and 
1 82 1 was opened in September, 1821. The site was granted free 
by Mr Scott of Gala, but the subscribers failed to procure 
titles and to enclose the area of ground attached to the school. 
Originally the managers consisted of all subscribers to the 
extent of jC^ annually, but latterly this qualification was reduced 
to half that amount. No record of its rise and progress is 
known to exist, and the only names of the original managers 
which have survived are William Brown, manufacturer, and 
William Wood, skinner. 

The first teacher was a Mr Scott, who, as was common at 
that time, took advantage of the annual inspection of the school 
by the Presbytery to introduce himself to public notice. The 
following advertisement in this connection appeared in the 

Scotsman^ — 

Galashiels, April 2^thy 1823. 
**This day, in presence of the heritors and other individuals connected 
with the town and parish of Galashiels, the school taught by Mr Scott was 
examined by a committee of the Presbytery of Melrose in reading, recitation, 




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464 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

grammar, Latin, French, arithmetic, history, geography, and writing. In all 
these branches the scholars acquitted themselves to the entire satisfaction of 
the examiners. 

The praiseworthy diligence matnifestly bestowed by Mr Scott on the moral 
and religious instruction of his pupils attracted the notice and merited the 
commendation of the committee, and, from the manner in which this numerous | 

seminary is conducted, the examiners feel themselves fully warranted in recom- * 

mending Mr Scott as a diligent and successful instructor of youth. 

David Baxter, moderator; George Thomson, minister of Melrose; Peter 
Craw, minister of St Boswells; John Thomson, minister of Maxton; Nathaniel 
Paterson, minister of Galashiels; John Scott of Gala. 

N.B. — Mr Scott has good accommodation for a few boarders. For 
particulars reference may be made to Professor Dunbar and Mr William 
Pyper, High School; and Archibald Gibson, Esq., W.S., Edinburgh; and to 
Dr Chrystal and Mr Lorrain, Grammar School, Glasgow." 

Judging from the frequent changes that occurred among 
the teachers, this school does not appear to have been very 
successful. When Mr Scott left he was succeeded by George 
Simpson, who previously had conducted a school on his own 
account in High Buckholmside. After remaining but a short 
time, he removed to Heriot, and taught the school there for the 
succeeding fifty years. 

Another teacher followed, also named Simpson, who came 

1828 from Torwoodlee, and was in office in 1828. Owing to his 
extraordinary length, he was dubbed ''The Heron" by his 
pupils. He in turn was succeeded by Mr Johnstone, who gave 

1839 place to Mr Barclay, he being followed in 1839 by Mr Lees, who 
had conducted a school on his own account in the Baptist 
Chapel at the top of Overhaugh Street. When Mr Lees 
demitted office, his successor was Mr Grieve, who soon left, 
and his place was occupied by Mr Wilson, who in turn was 
succeeded by John Cowan, Baptist pastor, who carried on 

1850 the school till February, 1850, when he died. 

The next teacher was the Rev. J. B. Robertson, who j 

formerly had been minister in the Evangelical Union Church in ] 

Union Street, he being succeeded by Mr Tully, a student of 
divinity belonging to the town, who shortly afterwards died. ! 

Mr Mitchell was the next teacher, and remained for the 



mmm>^ 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 465 

subsequent two years. At that time there were 150 scholars in 
attendance, the teacher's salary being ;^io, besides the fees, 
Mr Mitchell was succeeded by Mr Craig, who was noted 
principally on account of his proficiency as a teacher of drawing. 
During his term of office the school steadily declined, till his 
whole income did not exceed £2$ per annum. 
1 86 1 In 1 86 1 a meeting of the managers was held, at which it 

was discussed whether to endeavour to improve the efficiency of 
the school or remove it altogether. As the building was anti- 
quated, they decided to pull it down, which was done the 
following year. After all claims had been met, it was found 
that a balance of £y was left, which was devoted to the 
improvement of the Market Square. 

Darling's Haugh Subscription School. 

1845 This seminary was erected in 1845, upon a site in what used 

to be termed Darling's Haugh. After the passing of the Reform 
Bill in 1832, a number of houses were erected upon it by the 
Tory party f6r the purpose of securing votes, and for years 
afterwards it was known as the Tory Haugh. Latterly, how- 
ever, the street became known as Stirling Street, commemo- 
rating the name of the building firm principally engaged in its 
erection. 

The school originated in a desire amongst a portion of the 
community to procure for their families a better education than 
was obtainable in the town at that date. It was built by sub- 
scription, the trustees being John Cochrane and James Sime, 
manufacturers; Robert Haldane, writer; John Haldane, brewer; 
and William Sanderson, timber merchant. 

The first teacher was Mr Steel, who removed to North 
Berwick, where he died. He was succeeded by Mr Bell, who 
was in office in 1848, but of whom no record remains. He in 
turn gave place to Alexander Fisher, from Newcastleton, where 
his father was parish schoolmaster. Mr Fisher was a licentiate 
of the Church of Scotland, but, giving up thoughts of the 
ministry, he became editor of the Border Advertiser; latterly 

PI 



466 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

^850 emigrating to Canada, where he died. In 1850 the necessity 
which formerly existed for the maintenance of this school had 
ceased by the appointment of Mr Pollock to the Parish School, 
and the schoolhouse was sold to James Sime for jC^Oy 5s. 

Whitson's School. 

The teacher of this school was Robert Whitson, who 
originally was a footman in the service of the Gibsons of 
Ladhope. Leaving that situation, he opened a school in Comely- 
bank. When Mr Lees succeeded to the Subscription School Mr 
Whitson removed to the vacant schoolroom in Overhaugh Street, 
where, in'^course of time, he acquired the reputation of being a 
highly successful teacher of the young. He also did printing 
work on a small scale, and owned a shop in the same street, 
where he sold stationery and fishing tackle. Latterly the school 
was removed to a small building on the north side of Channel 
Street, the site of which is now occupied by the premises belonging 
to the Waverley Store Company. The school was largely made 
up by ** half-timers,'* or boys who were too young to work full 
time, and who, according to the Factory Acts, were obliged to 
attend school half the day. 

Mr Whitson was a genial but somewhat eccentric character, 
and an enthusiastic angler. He removed to Stow about 1864, 
where for some time after the passing of the Education Act he 
filled the office of School Board officer. He died on the 22nd 
January, 1881. 

Ladhope Free Church School. 

1843 After the Disruption in 1843 the infant Free Church, in 

addition to supplying the spiritual necessities of her people, also 
endeavoured to provide their secular education. With this object, 
the office-bearers in connection with Ladhope Free Church 
secured the middle flat of a three-story building, which still 
stands between the north side of Island Street and the Gala. It 
was a primitive-looking apartment, innocent of plaster, and 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 467 

reached by an outside wooden trap stair. A blacksmith 
occupied the ground floor, and the top flat was filled with hand 
looms. There were about eighty pupils in attendance. The 
teacher was John Davidson, a student of divinity in connection 
with the Free Church. The whir of the shuttles overhead and 
the clanging of the anvil beneath formed an accompaniment to 
the efforts of Mr Davidson perhaps unequalled in the annals of 
1849 education. In 1849 the school was transferred to Union Street 
Chapel, where the attendance increased to 122. After struggling 
on for some time in the new quarters, the school collapsed for 
want of funds. 

Gala School. 

1846 This school had its origin in 1846, being the result of a 

petition addressed to Captain Scott of Gala, which set forth, — 

*' That owing to the peculiar circumstances of the town, arising from so 
many of the married females having other things to attend to besides their 
domestic duties, and from most of the children being sent out at an early age 
to the factories, the want of a proper school for the training of infants has 
been sorely felt." 

Captain Scott entered very heartily into the scheme, and, in 
addition to granting a free site for the school in Roxburgh 
Street, also contributed the sum of ;^450. A grant of ;^200 
from the Treasury, together with local subscriptions, made up 
the sum of ;^9i5, the total cost of the school. 

After the building was erected, the subscribers met and 
elected a council of management to act along with Captain Scott. 
These were Thomas Davidson, Walter Cochrane, Henry 
Ballantyne, and Henry Sanderson, manufacturers; and William 
Rutherford, writer. On the advice of Captain Scott, the council 
appealed to Mr Gordon, the Government Inspector of Schools 
for the district, to recommend a suitable teacher. He selected 
Mr Ogilvie from Busby, near Glasgow, who was appointed to 
the office. The minimum salary was fixed at jC^Oj payable 
from the fees, which, if not amounting to that sum, were to be 



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468 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

supplemented to the requisite extent by the council, and, after 
deduction of the amount required for insurance and repairs, the 
balance of any sum exceeding that amount in addition. 

The fees were fixed at the following rates, — For children 
under four years of age, is 6d; for reading, above that age, 2s; 
with writing, 2S 6d; with arithmetic, 3s 6d; with grammar, 4s; 
with geography, 4s 6d; with mensuration, land surveying, and 
Latin, 6s per quarter. All pupils under six years of age to pay 
sixpence, and those above that age one shilling annually for 
coals. 
1847 Ti^g school was opened on the 17th November, 1847, but, 

after a short term of office, Mr Ogilvie left. On the 29th 
October, 1849, the council engaged William Rogerson, who had 
been employed as interim teacher. In order to secure a grant 
from the Treasury, a salary amounting to jC^S was subscribed, 

1857 and a grant of a similar sum received. In 1857 the school 
was reported upon as being in a flourishing condition. The 
number of scholars was 210, and Mr Rogerson got credit for 
being a painstaking and successful teacher. Afterwards some 
financial difficulties were experienced, and, at the council's 
request, the school was placed on the free list, the salary being 
reduced to £2^. 

1858 In 1858 Mr Rogerson left the district without warning, and 
it was discovered that he had emigrated to America, where, 
some years afterwards, he met with a tragic end, having been 
accidentally shot in a street brawl. 

Candidates for the vacancy were advertised for, and Thomas 
Fairley, from Edinburgh, received the appointment. Mr Fairley 
was a native of Biggar, and received his professional education at 
Moray House Training College. After teaching about a year 
in Limekilns School, Fife, he came to Gala School, where he 
continued master till 1861, when he resigned in order to open a 
higher-class school on his own account. 

The next teacher was James Duthie from Jedburgh, who was 
selected from twenty-two candidates. On his entry into office, 
the council raised the fees to a similar amount as was charged at 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 469 

the Parish School. The conditions of the engagement were, that 
eight per cent, be deducted from all fees received, which at 
this time amounted to jCgo^ for the purpose of keeping the 
premises in repair. All taxes to be paid by the teacher, and 
notice of two months was required on either side in the event 
of a change being desired. 

1866 In June, 1866, Mr Duthie resigned, having been appointed 

to the mastership of the West Parish School, Aberdeen. In the 
following month James Coldwell, who had received his training 
in the school, was promoted to the mastership on the same 
terms as Mr Duthie. 

1873 In October, 1873, at a meeting of the council it was agreed 

to hand over the school to the Burgh School Board, subject to 
the approval of Major Scott. No objection being offered, the 
school was transferred on the following terms, — 

**i. That the School Board pay the sum of £s9y ' ^s 3d, being price of paving 

round two sides of the school. 
II. That the present teacher be continued in his office, the School Board 
undertaking all responsibility regarding him and the pupil-teachers 
incumbent upon the council of management. 
III. That the School Board pay all expenses of transfer in connection with the 
handing over of the school." 

Shortly after coming under the Board Mr Coldwell resigned, 

and the school was put under a headmistress and made an 

1892 infant school. This arrangement was carried on till 1892, when 

the building was removed to provide a site for the present Gala 

Public School. 

Ladhope Bank School. 

This institution was conducted by Thomas Paterson, and 
for twenty-eight years supplied the educational wants of the 
Ladhope district. 

Mr Paterson was a native of Ancrum, and commenced his 
career as a teacher at Old Melrose. From thence he successively 
removed to Gattonside, Fountainhall, and Uphall. He next 
went to Fife, where he laboured as a teacher of writing. He 



470 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

came to Galashiels in 1842, and opened a school in Stirling Place 
where he remained till 1847, when he removed to Ladhope Bank. 
Latterly he fell into ill health, and when the district was other- 
wise provided for by the erection of Glendinning Terrace Public 
School, he resigned teaching on the 15th May, 1876. He died 
on the 15th January, 1877, in the sixty-sixth year of his age. 

St Peter's Episcopal School. 

This school is in connection with St Peter's Episcopal 
Church, and originated at the establishment of St Mary's Chapel 
in Wilderhaugh, both chapel and school occupying the ground 
floor of what had previously been a private dwelling-house. 

1851 The first teacher was Mr Barret, who started work in 185 1; 

the number of pupils on the roll at the end of the first year being 
seventy. Mr Barret remained till 1855, and he was succeeded 
by George Bates, who taught the school till his resignation 

1858 in 1858. 

In the following year the present school was erected in 
Abbotsford Road, with accommodation for 265 scholars. The 
first master in the new building was Thomas Shackelton, who 
remained till 1864, when he was succeeded by Charles Lap worth 
from Culham College, Berkshire. Mr Lapworth remained till 

1875 1875, when he resigned on receiving the appointment of second 
English master in the Madras College, St Andrews. In 1881 
Mr Lapworth, who had attained to much distinction as a 
geologist, was appointed to the Chair of Geology and Min- 
eralogy in the Mason Science College, Birmingham. 

The next teacher was Benjamin Kirk, who resigned at the 

1893 close of 1893, and was succeeded by John Robinson, who still 
carries on the work of the school. 

St Andrew's Roman Catholic School. 

At the time that Mr Hope-Scott of Abbotsford built 

1853 the first Roman Catholic Chapel in Galashiels, in 1853, he also 

provided a schoolroom sufficiently large to accommodate all the 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 471 

children belonging to the denomination at that time. As the 
congregation increased, the necessity for additional room soon 
began to make itself felt. Accordingly, when the first portion of 
the present church was erected, the old chapel was transformed 
into a schoolroom, and did duty as such for the succeeding 
twenty years. In addition to this school, Mr Hope-Scott also 
provided premises in Channel Street as a school for boys, and 
engaged the services of a teacher named McDermot, from 
Edinburgh. Owing, however, to the limited number of pupils 
who attended this school, it was given up. 

1879 ^^^ present school was opened in 1879, being built during 

the pastorate of Father Sherlock. One of the houses used as a 
Presbytery had to be removed to provide room for a site, a play- 
ground being secured by the removal of the old school. The 
new building consists of two flats, the lower one being intended 
for the school, and the upper as a hall for congregational 
purposes. It was designed to accommodate 200 scholars. 
There is now accommodation for 278 pupils, the average attend- 

1895 ance in 1895 being 218, when a grant of ;^2ii, los was earned. 
The following list comprises the names of the ladies who have 
acted as head-mistresses since the school was opened in 1853, — 
Mrs Delour, Misses Brady, Ennis, Connelly, Mead, Rutherford, 
Quinn, Hopper, Meehan, Barret, Gordon, Castignino, Mustyn, 
Mackay, Murray, Macdonald, and Caiferty. 

The Academy. 

This educational establishment was opened in September, 
1 86 1 1 86 1, by Thomas Fairley, who previously had been master in 
Gala School. Previous to that date, a number of parents, 
desirous of securing for their children a more advanced education 
than was usually provided in the town at that time, approached 
Mr Fairley with the view of inducing him to open a higher-class 
school. Yielding to their solicitations, he leased a building in 
Bridge Place now known as Bridge House, and opened there 
the Galashiels Academy. 



472 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

About this time the University of Edinburgh inaugurated 
a scheme for the examination of higher-class schools, known as 
the ** University Local Examination Scheme," to which pupils 
from the Academy were presented, and after a year or two Gala- 
shiels became a centre for candidates for the district. 

During the early years of the Academy, the attendance 
fluctuated between sixty and seventy pupils. The teaching staff 
consisted of the master, one male assistant, and a lady teacher 
whose time was almost entirely occupied in teaching music. 
There were also a visiting-master for drawing and a visiting- 
master for modern languages. 

1870 In 1870 the Academy was removed to its present site in 

Croft Street, where it continued to be conducted on the lines 

1883 indicated till 1883, when it was taken over by the Burgh School 
Board, and, with the sanction of the Education Department, 
declared a ** higher-class public school.*' The Board leased the 
premises for ten years and appointed Mr Fairley headmaster 
on the same terms as to tenure of office as the other teachers 
under their jurisdiction. 

In order to extend the benefits of the education given at the 
Academy, a few gentlemen belonging to the town established 
a system of bursaries, and, chiefly through the exertions of 
Dr Somerville, Andrew Brown, Maryfield; James Sanderson, 
Woodlands; and others, a sum of jCsoo was raised for this 
purpose. These bursaries were offered for competition to 
candidates who were pupils at the elementary schools under 
the Board, and, being of the value of jC$ each, they proved 
sufficient to defray the cost of education, including books. 
At the first competition twelve places were offered, and in 
succeeding years vacancies were competed for as they occurred. 
That they were highly appreciated was obvious, the number of 
competitors being always greatly in excess of the number of 
vacancies. A new class-room was built in 1883, furnishing 
altogether accommodation for 153 pupils, to provide for the 
increased attendance. 

At the time the Academy was taken over by the Board, the 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 473 

Education Department instituted a system of inspection of 
higher-class public schools, and since 1884 it has been annually 
inspected by a university professor. In 1888 Leaving Certifi- 
cates were adopted by the Department, which render it almost 
impossible for a school to maintain its place if it fails to keep 
1893 touch with the general advance in efficiency. In 1893 the 
Academy building was acquired by the Burgh School Board. 

By the Education and Local Taxation (Scotland) Act, the 
Board receives the sum of ;^294 to be applied towards its main- 
tenance. In return for this grant, the Board provides 
fifty free places to be competed for by pupils who have been in 
attendance at a State-aided school within the burgh for at least 
two years, not being under ten nor over twelve years of age. 
These free scholarships are tenable for four years, a period 
which may be extended at the pleasure of the Board. 

Under the present arrangement, the Academy consists of 
preparatory, junior, and senior departments, and the staff 
comprises the headmaster, with two assistants, a mistress for 
the preparatory department, and a lady teacher of music. 

Mr Fairley holds the record in the town for long and hon- 
ourable service as an instructor of youth. Under his tuition, a 
generation which comprises a very considerable proportion of 
the business men of the town has grown up. In 1881 he was 
entertained to dinner by a number of his old pupils, who 
presented him with a silver salver bearing a suitable inscription 
and a purse containing ;^io5. In 1892 Mr Fairley occupied 
the position of president of the Educational Institute of 
Scotland, when it met in Galashiels, the occasion being 
signalised by another presentation, consisting of a president's 
gown, gold badge, and a purse containing one hundred guineas. 

Ladhope School. 

1866 This school was erected in 1866 to meet the educational 

requirements of the west end of the town, its existence being 
principally due to the exertions of the Rev. Robert Black- 
stock. The school was originally vested in Ladhope Church 



474 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

trustees, with an acting committee elected from those who 
subscribed towards its erection. The school and schoolhouse 
cost ;^ii05, of which the heritors contributed jCi^4i local 
subscribers, ;{^5ii; grant from Treasury, ^{^315; leaving a debt 
of ;^ 1 15, which was soon paid off. 

The first teacher was Mr Wardrop, who remained till 1872, 
when George Menzies was appointed. Mr Menzies continued 

1875 till 1875, when he received the appointment of headmaster of 
the old Parochial School, under the Landward School Board. 
He was succeeded by David Thomson, who conducted the 

1880 school for the next five years, when in 1880 the school was 
taken over by the Burgh School Board. Mr Thomson resigned 
and was succeeded by Andrew Thomson, from Westruther. At 
this time the school had accommodation for 250 pupils. In 

1887 1887 the teacher's house was converted into a class-room, the 
alteration providing accommodation for sixty additional scholars. 

1894 In February, 1894, Mr Thomson was transferred to Glen- 
dinning Terrace School, and his place was filled by Thomas 
Crerar, who had been promoted from an assistantship in the 
Burgh School. 

The Burgh School. 

The original portion of this building, together with the 

1874 schoolhouse, were erected in 1874-75 ^t a cost of over ;^4900. 

Thomas Bain, from Tranent, was chosen to fill the position of 

headmaster. Owing to the rapid growth of the town at that 

date and onward, it was found necessary in 1882 to make an 

1895 addition to the building, at a cost of jC3^94* '" ^895 a con- 
siderable addition was made to the schoolhouse. 

The school and schoolhouse have cost altogether more than 
;^8790, there being accommodation for 920 scholars. 

Glendinning Terrace School. 

1876 For the convenience of the children belonging to the 
parish of Melrose who resided in Galashiels and surrounding 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 475 

district, Melrose School Board erected this school and school- 
house. The school provides accommodation for 351 scholars, 
and, including the schoolhouse, the cost was jC39^^y los 6d. 

The school was opened on the 2nd May, 1876, by Henry 
Brown of Halkburn, who, as a member of the Melrose School 
Board, always took a hearty interest in its welfare. The first 
headmaster was William Dunlop, who had previously been 
engaged in Aberdeen. 

After several futile attempts had been made by successive 
Burgh School Boards to acquire the school, terms were at 

1 89 1 length arranged, and in 1891 the buildings and teaching staif 
were taken over. 

1894 In 1894 Mr Dunlop was transferred to the new Gala Public 

School in Roxburgh Street, and the vacancy was filled by the 
transference of Andrew Thomson from Ladhope School. In 
1895 the school was completely filled, the average attendance 
being exactly equal to the accommodation. 



Gala High School. 

1 89 1 This seminary was opened in November, 1891, as a 

voluntary higher-class school, under the examination and 
inspection of the Scotch Education Department. 

The curriculum embraces a modern commercial education, 
including modern languages, Latin, English, shorthand, 
chemistry, mathematics, drawing, and music. The school is 
built to suit modern requirements; there is space for separate 
play-grounds for boys and girls, and it is the local centre for the 
London College of Music examinations. 

The attendance is about 100. The fees in the preparatory 
department vary from ids 6d to i6s per quarter, the junior from 
15s to jC^j and the senior up to ;^i, los, besides extras for 
special subjects. 

The proprietor and headmaster is Andrew M. Grieve, 
undergraduate first-class (London) and certificated teacher, who 
is assisted by a competent staff. 



476 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Gala Public School. 

1894 This school was completed in 1894 at a total cost of 

over jC93^7' It provides accommodation for 603 scholars, 
exclusive of the upper flat, which contains drawing, casting, 
cookery, and lecture rooms, and a splendidly-fitted chemical 
laboratory with bench accommodation for twenty-four students 
working at the same time. 

The headmaster is William Dunlop, who was transferred 
from Glendinning Terrace School. 

Moat House Kindergarten and School. 

1882 This institution had its origin in 1882 in a flat in the 

Victoria Buildings, and in 1885 it was removed to the present 
premises, near the site once occupied by the old Tolbooth. It is 
the only school in the town at the present time that exists 
exclusively for girls. The school is under the direction of the 
Misses Si me, who hold certificates for the theory and practice of 
education from Berlin and the Leipzig Conservatorium. They 
are assisted by four governesses, besides visiting teachers for 
piano, violin, and dancing. 

In this seminary the Froebelian methods of teaching are 
employed as much as possible, and there is also a kindergarten 
department. The subjects taught comprise English, French, 
German, Latin, drawing, and music, there being a junior and 
senior class in each subject. The school year is divided into 
three terms, and the fees range from ;£i^i, 5s to ;^6, 6s per term, 
with the usual extras for special subjects. 

Technical School. 

At a meeting of the Manufacturers^ Corporation on 

1882 30th October, 1882, it was resolved to form a class for instruction 

in weaving; and, to defray the necessary expenditure, it was 

agreed to raise a guarantee fund of ;^50Q. A committee was 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 477 

appointed to carry the resolution into practical effect, the lower 
room of the Public Hall being secured as a class-room, and a 
properly qualified teacher engfaged. 

At this stage the committee was instructed to confer with 
the council of the Mechanics' Institute to ascertain if they would 
undertake the management of the school. In that event the 
Corporation offered to relieve them from all financial liability; 
and, so as to secure a voice in the management, they suggested 
that the committee be admitted members of the council of the 
Mechanics* Institute. These terms being considered satisfactory, 
the council undertook the duty, and it was also agreed to com- 
mence an additional class for the purpose of giving instruction 
in the art of dyeing. 

1883 The school was opened in November, 1883, on which 
occasion Lord Reay occupied the chair, and a lecture was 
delivered by Mr Beaumont, weaving master, Leeds, the subject 
being *' Technical education in connection with the fancy woollen 
trade.*' At the close of the meeting ninety-one pupils were 
enrolled. 

1884 The class proved highly successful, and in 1884 the dyeing 
class won a bronze medal and the sum of ;^i5 from the City and 
Guilds of London Institute. At that time an additional class 
was formed for the study of chemistry. The next year's work 
showed great progress, — among twenty pupils who sat for 
examination, one bronze medal and three first and twelve second- 

1887 class certificates having been secured. In 1887 the result of the 
examinations held under the Science and Art Department of 
the City and Guilds of London Institute showed better results 
from this school than from any other of a similar kind in the 
United Kingdom, 

1888 In 1888 the Burgh School Board resolved to establish a 
technical school, and for this purpose a combination was effected 
with the Melrose and Galashiels Landward Boards. The com- 
mittee of management consisted of fourteen members, of whom 
four were from the Burgh Board, four from the Manufacturers' 
Corporation, two each from Melrose and Landward School 



478 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Boards, and one each from the building and engineering trades 
in the town. The classes were opened in the autumn of 1889 
with a staflF of five teachers. The subjects comprised mathe- 
matics, mechanics, elementary and advanced drawing, chemistry, 
magnetism and electricity, wool-dyeing, and a junior and senior 
class for weaving. 

The classes which had been organised by the Manufacturers' 
Corporation were now combined with those of the Burgh 
School Board under the designation of the ** Galashiels Com- 
bined Technical School.'* This arrangement continued till 
1891 1 89 1, when Glendinning Terrace and the Landward School in 
the Old Town were acquired by the Burgh School Board. Since 
that date the school has been styled '*The* Galashiels Technical 
School,'* and has been carried on with a varying degree of success 
under the joint management of the Burgh School Board and the 
Manufacturers' Corporation. 

In addition to the foregoing schools, there have been a 
number of other establishments. Amongst these were that of the 
Misses Stewart, who for a lengthened period conducted a higher- 
class school for girls in Roxburgh Street; Miss Copeland, in 
Elm Row; Miss Locke; Mrs Dickson; Miss Main, Bridge 
Street; Mrs Notman, Green Street; Mrs Chalmers, Comelybank; 
Mrs Fairbairn, Queen Street; Miss Halley, Queen Street; Miss 
Crosbie, Channel Street; and Miss Brockie. 

Since the Education Act came into force, the total cost 
incurred by the School Boards in the town for the erection of 
1896 buildings has amounted to ;^25,5oo. In 1896 the Board em- 
ployed seventy-three teachers, whose aggregate salaries amounted 
to jC4597y 5s per annum. 

The following are the names and periods of service of the 
various chairmen of the Burgh School Board since 22d March, 
1873, — William Brown, Gala Hill, from 1873 to 1876; Thomas 
Roberts, 1876 to 1885; Dr Somerville, 1885 to 1894; James 
Brown, Ashwood, from 1894. 



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SECTION v.— BANKS AND BANKERS. 



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CHAPTER L 

Edinburgh and Leith Bank, 

THE first bank established in Galashiels was a branch of 
the Edinburgh and Leith Banking Company, with 
William Craig, writer, as agent. Mr Craig was the 
first of his profession in the village, and, by his integrity and 
honesty, earned the confidence and goodwill of all with whom 
he came in contact. In his day, facilities for entering into 
lawsuits were not so plentiful as now, and, whe^n differences 
arose among the villagers, the services of Mr Craig were 
generally required as umpire. His decisions in such cases were 
considered so just and equitable that he became known in the 
village as ''God's lawyer.'* 

r8o3 Mr Craig died in 1803, ^^^ was succeeded by his son 

George, then only twenty years of age, whose name became a 
household word in the village, and, among the older natives of 
the town, anecdotes and reminiscences in which he forms the 
central figure still exist. 

1813 In 1813 Baron Bailie Paterson died, and Mr Craig was 

appointed his successor, and in this relation he was widely known 
and highly respected. He was on terms of intimacy with Sir 
Walter Scott, who was a frequent visitor at the bank in con- 
nection with his financial affairs, and who thus refers to Mr 
Craig in a letter to a friend, — 

** George Craig, writer, Galashiels, for whose judgment, sagacity, and 
even for whose taste I have much respect." 

1820 In 1820 Mr Craig was accidentally hurt while hunting. 

The incident is thus recorded by Sir Walter, who was present, — 

** Queen Mab, who was bestrode by Captain Adams, lifted up her heels 
against Mr Craig of Galashiels, whose leg she greeted with a thump like a 
pistol shot. Mr Craig was helped from his horse, but would not permit his 

481 ui 



482 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

boot to be drawn off, protesting he would faint if he saw the bone of his leg 
sticking through the stocking. Some thought he was reluctant to exhibit his 
legs in their primitive and unclothed simplicity, in respect they have an 
unhappy resemblance to a pair of tongs. The Captain declared that if the 
accident had happened in action, the surgeon and drum boys would have had 
off, not his boot only, but his leg to boot, before he could have uttered a 
remonstrance. At length Gala and I prevailed to have the boot drawn, and 
to my great joy I found the damage was not serious, though the pain must 
have been. severe." 

It is stated in the Unpublished Annals of the Parish that 

'^ In conducting the affairs of the bank, Mr Craig enjoyed the assistance 
of a most trustworthy assistant, who, before the passing of the Reform Bill, 
blossomed into a most violent Whig, while Mr Craig was the local agent in 
the Tory interest. 

Without any consideration for the position of his employer, he got into 
the habit of attending all the Whig meetings, and soon became a man of light 
and leading in that party. Latterly his enthusiasm became so great that, 
after attending some political demonstration, he could not sleep, but sat up 
till three o'clock in the morning, drinking ale and reading the Examiner 
newspaper, Leigh Hunt, the editor, having become the literary god of his 
idolatry. His conduct at length became intolerable, and Mr Craig was com- 
pelled to dispense with his services. He was succeeded by a young man who 
did not care a straw for the political opinions of either Whig, Tory, or 
Radical, but soon betrayed a strong proclivity to spend his money in glorious 
nightly jubilations in one or other of the public houses in the village in the 
company of a few boon companions.'' 

Owing to such conduct, Mr Craig was forced to dispense 
1836 with the services of this worshipper of Bacchus also, and in 1836 
he entered into partnership with William Rutherford, writer, 
from Jedburgh, the firm being known as Craig & Rutherford. 
In the same year Mr Craig received a token of public esteem, and 
the occasion was thus referred to in a provincial newspaper,^ 

** The enterprising and industrious inhabitants of the thriving town of 
Galashiels evinced their feelings of gratitude to Mr Craig, their worthy 
Bailie and respected townsman, by presenting him with a handsome silver 
salver and jug of the value of j^70, upon which was engraved a suitable , 
inscription. The contributors were, of all classes — manufacturers, artizans, 
and farmers in the neighbourhood, who have had daily relations with Mr 
Craig for the past thirty years. 

An excellent dinner was given in Thprburn's new inn, at which upwards 
of sixty were present, William Paterson, Esq., in the chair." 



John Pringle 
Robert Stewart 



Robert Haldane 




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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 483 

It was told, regarding Mr Craig, that an elderly maiden 
lady, belonging to one of the county families in the district, died 
and left him all that she possessed. On being apprised by the 
relatives of the terms of her will, Mr Craig declined to take 
advantage of such an opportunity of enriching himself. It was 
with difficulty that he was prevailed upon to accept some 
trifling article of jewellery as a memento of the deceased lady. 
1842 In 1842 the Leith Bank failed, and, being a shareholder, 

Mr Craig was ruined. This proved his death-blow, his spirit 
was broken, and an attack of bronchitis cut him off in 1843, 
in the sixtieth year of his age. 

The National Bank of Scotland. 

1825 A branch of the National Bank was opened in 1825 in 

the premises it presently occupies. Robert Haldane, writer, 
was the first agent. The house was built by George Scott, 
and, previous to the opening of the bank, was known as 
''The Fleece Inn.'' The upper flat was used as a ballroom, 
and it was in this room that the Manufacturers' Corporation 
entertained Sir Walter Scott in 182 1. In these days the 
sport of cock-fighting was extensively patronised, and at 
Fasterns-een the centre of the large room was laid with turf, 
upon which many a valiant bird met his death. 

Previously the street was known as Scott's Place, presum- 
ably in relation to the owner of the inn, but after the bank was 
opened the present name was substituted. 

Mr Haldane was a native of the town, and the name is one 
of the oldest on record in the locality. In the rent roll of the 
barony of Gala in 1656, given elsewhere, it is borne by five 
individuals whose social position ranged from the humble ^^ under 
coater " to the aristocratic V' twelfe soume mailer." 

Mr Haldane served his apprenticeship in the oflice of John 
Paterson, writer, on the completion of which he went to 
Glasgow, where he acquired a varied experience in commercial 
and general business. He returned to Galashiels in 1823, and 
started business on his own account. 



484 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

At that date Galashiels was but a struggling village; the 
public works were small| and capital was extremely limited. 
Mr Haldane soon realised that business on all hands was 
hampered for want of capital, and that if the town was to 
prosper, more money must be forthcoming. The only other 
bank in the town at that time was the branch of the Edinburgh and 
Leith Banking Company, but the little money it had to lend was 
so difficult to obtain that it was often beyond the power of 
would-be borrowers to procure it. Dr Douglas had encouraged 
and assisted the struggling manufacturers to the best of his 
ability, but he had passed away before they had fully surmounted 
the difficulties in which he had assisted them during his life time. 

After being appointed agent for the National Bank, Mr 
Haldane found himself in a position to assist steady and 
industrious men to carry on and increase their businesses. At 
the same time his intimate knowledge of their various circum- 
stances enabled him to do so with advantage to his clients as 
well as the bank. The beneficial result was soon observable in 
the progress of the town, and, by his judicious assistance, the 
foundations of its after prosperity were firmly laid. 

Mr Haldane acted as the Liberal agent for the Galashiels 
district of the county of Selkirk, as well as for the similar 
1829 portion of Roxburghshire. In 1829 he was presented with the 
freedom of the burgh of Peebles, and in 1842 he received a 
similar honour from the burgh of Selkirk. During the political 
agitation previous to the passing of the Reform Bill, Mr 
Haldane acted as. one of the local political leaders in the town, 
as the following letter testifies, — 

'* Whitehall, 27M October^ 1831. 
Sir, — I have had the honour of laying before the King, the loyal and 
dutiful address of the manufacturers, merchants, and other inhabitants of the 
town of Galashiels, on the subject of Parliamentary reform, which accom- 
panied your letter of the 21st to Earl Grey. 

And I have the satisfaction to acquaint you that His Majesty was pleased 
to receive the same in the most gracious manner. 

I have the honour to be, Sir, 

Your obedient Servant, 
RopERT Haldane, Esq. Melbourne," 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 485 

Mr Haldane was mainly instrumental in raising the capital 
for and establishing the Galashiels Gas Light Company, of which 
he became the secretary and treasurer. He played an active 
part in promoting the formation of the North British Railway 
to the town, and acted on behalf of the Railway Company in 
purchasing the various properties in the district. He also did 
much valuable work in furthering the Galashiels and Selkirk 
Railway, becoming one of the first directors. 

While doing much for his native town, Mr Haldane also 
took a great interest in agricultural matters. By means of 
judicious advances to farmers in times of depression, he became 
the warm friend of many whose descendants to this day 
remember with gratitude what he did for their fathers in 
adverse times. 

1854 In 1854 Mr Haldane was entertained to a public dinner in 
the Bridge Inn assembly room, where a company of seventy 
gentlemen, comprising all the manufacturers in the town, 
besides farmers and others from the surrounding district, met to 
do him honour. The chair was occupied by William Paterson 
of Ettrickhall, who, in proposing the toast of the evening, said 

** They had met to express their esteem and regard for their guest. They 
were all much indebted to him for the high standing and celebrity Galashiels 
had attained as a manufacturing town. When they were less prosperous 
than at present, by prudent liberality Mr Haldane had helped them through 
their difficulties. He had imbued them with a spirit of enterprise in building 
mills, and had added very much to the wealth and prosperity of the district." 

Mr Haldane latterly became tenant of the farm of Fernielee, 

1855 which he occupied till his death in 1855. 

He was succeeded in the bank agency by his son William, 
who, in connection with his brother Richard, carried on the 
law business founded by their father. William Haldane also 
acted as Liberal agent for the Galashiels district of the county of 
Selkirk. He was the local agent for the Hon. George Elliot 
when he unsuccessfully contested the Border Burghs against 
George O. Trevelyan in 1868. Mr Haldane died on 21st 
1887 December, 1887. 



486 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1874 In 1874, consequent on the state of Mr Haldane's health, 

William Little, from Selkirk, was appointed his bank assistant. 

1880 When Mr Haldane resigned the agency of the bank in 1880, 

John Dun, Craig Park, was selected to succeed him, but latterly 
the agency has been jointly held by Messrs Dun and Little. 

Mr Dun is a native of the town, and belongs to a family who 
have been connected with agriculture for generations, amongst 
whom one at least was found in the ranks of the Covenanters. 
He has for a long period acted as secretary of the Galashiels 
Farmers' Club, and served on the Parochial Board for a term of 
years, and is now an active member of the Parish Council. He 
has served several terms in the Town Council, and has filled the 
office of Bailie for the last five years. 

The Edinburgh and Glasgow Bank. 

1843 A branch of this bank was opened about 1843 in Sime 
Place, with John Pringle, writer, as agent. In course of time 
the office was removed to a building erected for that purpose 
in Bridge Street at the north end of Johnstone's Close. 

Mr Pringle was a native of Melrose, where he served his 
apprenticeship as a writer, and afterwards removed to Edinburgh. 
On his appointment as agent for the above bank, he came to 
Galashiels and held that position till it stopped payment in 1857, 

When Galashiels was constituted a Police Burgh, Mr 

Pringle was appointed assessor and collector, which offices he 

held till 1871, about which date he retired from business and 

1880 shortly afterwards removed to Edinburgh, where he died in 1880. 

Mr Pringle was an enthusiastic angler, and was one of the 
original members of the Edinburgh Angling Club which held 
its symposiums at the old '' Nest,'* overlooking Tweed's silvery 
stream at Fernielee. 

The City of Glasgow Bank. 

1844 This branch was opened in 1844 in the old Cloth Hall 
under the charge of William Hastie, who had succeeded George 
Craig as Baron Bailie on the Gala estate the previous year. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 487 

Before coming to Galashiels, Mr Hastie had been for 
twenty years managing clerk to Messrs Curie & Erskine, 
Melrose, and before leaving he was entertained to a public 
dinner. Dr Clarkson proposed the toast of the evening, and at 
the same time presented him with a silver jug suitably inscribed. 

1 840 M^ Hastie died in 1849, and the bank agency was trans- 

ferred to William Rutherford, writer, who removed the bank 
office to premises at the foot of High Street, near its junction 
with Bank Street, and latterly to a more suitable building at the 
junction of High Street and Channel Street, where the business 

1856 was carried on till 1856, when, owing to difficulties at head- 
quarters, the branch was closed. 

The Western Bank of Scotland. 

Hugh Lees, writer, opened a branch of this bank in Gala- 
1854 ^^^^'^ ^" ^^54 ^" ^^^ premises at the head of High Street 
presently occupied by the Royal Bank of Scotland. 

Mr Lees was the youngest of the family of Richard Lees, 
manufacturer, Buckholmside. A few years previous to the 
opening of the bank Mr Lees had been in partnership as a 
solicitor with his brother-in-law, Robert Haldane, agent of the 
National Bank of Scotland. This connection was dissolved 
about 1849. When the Police Act was adopted in 1850, Mr 
Lees received the appointment of Clerk to the Commissioners. 
I gey In 1857, when the Western Bank collapsed, he suffered to a 
considerable extent through being a shareholder. 

The Royal Bank of Scotland. 

jg„ Immediately after the failure of the Western Bank in 1857, a 

branch of the above bank was opened in the premises previously 
occupied by the Western Bank, also under the charge of Mr 
Lees, who did not long survive the appointment. He died on 

1858 3^^ December, 1858, at the early age of forty-seven. He was 
succeeded in the agency by Robert Stewart, whom, a few months 



488 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

previously, he had assumed as a partner in the law business, and 
the firm was known as Lees & Stewart. 

Mr Stewart was a native of Murthly, Perthshire, and was 
only about twenty-two years of age when his partner died. He 
then succeeded to all the appointments held by Mr Lees at the 
time of his death. 

In connection with the Bank, a joint-agent was appointed in 
the person of William Paterson of Ettrick Hall and Glendearg, 
who also tenanted the farm of Kilnknowe, and carried on 
business as a tanner in Channel Street. Mr Paterson died in 
1875 1875, when Mr Stewart became sole agent till his sudden and un- 
expected demise, which occurred at Grantley on i6th July, 1879. 

Mr Stewart was succeeded in the bank agency by Richard 
Lees, only son of Hugh Lees. Mr Lees was born in 
1845, and served his apprenticeship with Messrs Freer & 
Dunn, solicitors, Melrose. He was admitted a law agent in 
1866, when he joined his father's firm of Lees & Stewart. In 
1879 h^ was appointed Town Clerk, and in the same year, at 
the death of Mr Stewart, he succeeded to his various municipal 
and other public offices. As secretary to the South of Scotland 
Chamber of Commerce, Mr Lees has taken an active interest in 
the promotion of all legislation and other public measures 
affecting trade in the Border towns, and is the author of **The 
Inferior Courts Judgments Extension Act, 1882.*' In that year 
he was appointed Consular Agent of the United States for the 
south of Scotland. 

To Mr Lees is largely due the placing of the bust of Sir 
Walter Scott in Westminster Abbey. He adopted the suggestion 
of such a project, contained in a letter in one of the daily papers 
in June, 1894, and became secretary and treasurer of a committee 
appointed at a meeting held in London for the purpose of 
carrying out the idea. The sum of ;£^540 was collected, and 
the bust, a copy of Chantrey*s in Abbotsford, from the studio 
of John Hutchison, R.S.A., Edinburgh, was unveiled by the 
Duke of Buccleuch in the Poet's Corner, in May, 1897, where a 
prominent site, long intended for Scott, was given by the Dean. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 489 

The Bank of Scotland. 

1857 The local branch of the above bank was opened in 1857 by 

William Rutherford, writer, in the building fornierly occupied 
by the City of Glasgow Bank, adjoining the west end of the 
present Post Office, where it remained till 1862, when it was 
removed to the present premises. 

Mr Rutherford was a native of Jedburgh, and came to 
Galashiels in 1836, when he entered into partnership with 
George Craig. Mr C^aig was agent for the Edinburgh and 
Leith Banking Company, and when that institution collapsed 
in 1842 he lost all his means, being one of the shareholders. 
Although Mr Rutherford had no connection with the bank, he 
became responsible for the liabilities of the firm, and before 
its affairs were wound up it cost him ;^4000. After the 
death of Mr Craig, Mr Rutherford continued to carry on the 
business on his own account, and when Mr Hastie died in 1849 
he received the agency of the City of Glasgow Bank, which he , 
managed till 1856, when the branch was closed. 

In 1857, as has been stated, Mr Rutherford accepted an i 
agency of the Bank of Scotland, and about i860 he assumed his 
son Alexander as joint-agent. This continued till 1891, when 
Mr Rutherford died, and in the following year Alexander k 
Rutherford assumed his son William as joint-agent, under which 
arrangement the business of the bank is still carried on. j 

William Rutherford was one of the founders of the munici- : 
pality of Galashiels, and, after the first election of Commis- 
sioners in 1850, he was elected Senior Magistrate, which position 
he occupied for the subsequent six years. He was also agent 
for the Conservative party in the counties of Roxburgh and 
Selkirk, and was a prominent figure in the keen political contests 
which took place during his day. 
1859 About 1859 ^ case happened which brought him much fame 

as a shrewd and able lawyer. He had two clients, the Misses 
Darling, the last representatives of an old local family, who 
resided at Portobello, where they made the acquaintance of a 
Pole named Willobyski, who at the time was practising in 



490 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

Edinburgh as a homoeopath is t. The intimacy resulted in his 
forming the intention of marrying one of the sisters. The other 
sister died, and when her will was read its terms raised sus- 
picions in Mr Rutherford's mind that undue influence had been 
employed. He collected such evidence as resulted in securing 
a conviction for forgery, and Willobyski was sentenced to penal 
servitude for a term of years. 

When Miss Darling died several years afterwards she 
bequeathed her property to Mr Rutherford and her medical 
attendant, Dr Menzies, who conveyed it to the relations of the 
deceased lady. 

When the City of Glasgow Bank collapsed in 1878, Mr 
Rutherford was one of the shareholders, and he delivered up his 
last farthing to the liquidators to satisfy the claims of the 
Bank creditors. At that time he was seventy-four years of age, 
but he set himself bravely to begin life again as he had done 
when he came to the town. He died on the 13th December, 
1 89 1 1 89 1, aged eighty-six. 

The Commercial Bank of Scotland. 

The Galashiels branch of the above bank was opened by 
1866 James Smail on the ist November, 1866, in a corner shop in 
High Street on the south side of Johnstone's Close, opposite 
the Public HalK The present premises were opened in 1868. 

Mr Smail is a native of Jedburgh, and came to Galashiels 
from Earlston, where he had also established a branch of the 
same bank. He remained in Galashiels for thirteen years, and 
took a hearty interest in all that concerned the welfare and 
prosperity of the town. For eleven years he acted as Quarter- 
master to the Border Battalion of Volunteers, and for several 
years was secretary to the Border Rifle Association. He also 
acted for a time as secretary to the Selkirk and Galashiels 
Agricultural Society, treasurer to the Galashiels Farmers' Club, 
and clerk and treasurer to the Landward School Board. 
1880 In 1880 he was promoted to the Kirkcaldy branch of the 

bank; and, previous to leaving Galashiels, he was entertained to 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 4^1 

a public dinner, at which the late Sir George Douglas presided 
over a company of 140 representative gentlemen belonging to the 
town and Border district generally. He remained in Kirkcaldy 
for five years, when he was called to Edinburgh to fill the 
position of secretary to the Commercial Bank. 

Mr Smail was an enthusiastic and successful angler, and 
occasionally might have been seen, rod in hand, wending his w^ay 
along the banks of the Tweed, Gala, Leader, or indeed any other 
of the famous Border streams, all of which he knew as an angler. 

Mr Smail was a regular contributor to Once a Week when 
Shirley Brooks was editor; and has also written prose arid verse 
for Chambers Journal and other magazines, besides devoting a 
good deal of time to the study of natural history and archae- 
ology, and he has written largely on these subjects. He also 
wrote occasional verses and ballads, which appeared in the 
Scotsman under the nom de plume of ** Matthew Gotterson.'' 

The following verses are given as specimens of his writings, — 

AN UPLAND WINTER NIGHT. 

I. 
Fierce the storm blast swirls and surges, 

Blindin' night-drift sweeps the sky, 
As beside the silent peat fire 

Silent sit my wife and I; 
And the collies watch and listen 

In a silent, strange unrest; 
Glowerin* sadly in our faces, 

As with sympathy impressed. 
Neighbours we hae nane to crack wi*. 

Dreary nights like this to cheer; 
Wild and wordless voicings only 

Risin* on the night we hear. 
r the glen the burn is roaring, 

Fierce the fox barks on the hillj 
And the fir wood's fitful moaning 

Brings a melancholy thrill: 
While on snaw-bound door and window 

Mystic strokes the pauses fill: 
A* withoot is wild and restless, 

A' within is hushed and still. 



492 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS 

II. 

So we sit, and brood, and listen, 

Unrelieved by warmth or light, 
For a sadness steals upon us 

Wi* the wildness o* the night. 
Even memory fails to picture 

Summer's glowing hills and skies; 
For the past dies in the present, 

A' its light in shadow lies. 
But though far frae friendly faces, 

And though dowie ilka heart, 
We repine not, without murmur 

We accept our humble part. 
Life is merged in joy and sorrow 

By the Will that rules it a'. 
And we strive to take the portions 

Meetly that to us befa*. 
Still, we sit and brood and listen 

As if dead our spirit-light. 
For a sadness hangs around us 

Wi* the wildness o* the night. 

Mr Smairs lyre is not confined to one string. He is the 
author of that stirring Border ballad entitled ** Little Jock 
Elliot.*' It breathes the characteristic spirit of old Border life, 
with its feuds and forays, its rough-riding moss-troopers, and 
devil-may-care rievers. It is a perfect embodiment of the reck- 
less daring, the fierce courage, and untamable spirit of the men 
who lived in those wild and lawless times. The refrain is very 
old, and is all that remains of some forgotten ballad. 

LITTLE JOCK ELLIOT. 

My castle is aye my ain, 

An* herried it never sail be; 
For I maun fa' ere it*s taen, 

An* wha daur meddle wi' me ? 
Wi* my kute i* the rib o* my naig, 

My sword hingin* down by my knee. 
For man I am never afraid — 

For wha daur meddle wi' me ? 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 493 

Wha daur meddle wi' me? 
Wha daur meddle wi' me ? 

Oh, my name it is Little Jock Elliot — 
An' wha daur meddle wi* me ? 

Fierce Both well I vanquished clean, 

Gar'd troopers an' fitmen flee, 
By my faith I dumfoundered the Queen — 

But wha daur meddle wi' me ? 
Alang by the Dead Water stank, 

Jock Fenwick I met on the lea, 
But his saddle was toom in a clank — 

An' wha daur meddle wi' me ? 

Where Keildar meets wi' the Tyne, 

Mysel' an' my kinsmen three, 
We tackled the Percys nine — 

They II never mair meddle wi' me. 
Sir Harry wi' nimble brand, 

He pricket my cap ajee. 
But I cloured his head on the strand — 

An' wha daur meddle wi' me ? 

The Cumberland rievers ken 

The straik my arm can gie. 
An' warily pass the glen — 

For wha daur meddle wi' me ? 
I've chased the loons down to Carlisle, 

Jookit the raip on the Hairibee, 
Where my naig nickert an' cockit his tail — 

But wha daur meddle wi' me ? 

My kinsmen are true, an' brawlie, 

At glint o' an enemie. 
Round Parke's auld turrets they rally — 

An' wha daur meddle wi' me? 
Then, heigh for the tug and the tussle. 

Though the cost be Jethart tree; 
Let the Queen and her troopers gae whussle — 

Oh ! wha daur meddle wi' me ? 

Wha daur meddle wi' me ? 
Wha daur meddle wi' me ? 

Oh, my name it is Little Jock Elliot — 
An' wha daur meddle wi' me ? 



494 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

When Mr Smail left for Kirkcaldy he was succeeded at 

Galashiels by Frederick Russell, who had been agent for the 

same bank at Earlston. Mr Russell was transferred to 

1891 Glasgow in 1891, and Alexander T. Dalgliesh was selected as 

his successor. 

Mr Dalgliesh is a native of Stirling, where he entered 
the service of the bank, and in 1872 he was transferred to the 
Glasgow office. He was appointed agent at the Trongate 
branch in 1890, and in the following year was promoted to 
the branch at Galashiels. 

The British Linen Company. 

1873 In 1873 the above banking company acquired the property 

in Bridge Street which belonged to John Pringle, who in the 
same premises formerly acted as agent for the Edinburgh and 
Glasgow Bank. George D. Cramond was first agent for the 
British Linen Company here. 

Mr Cramond is a native of Roxburghshire, and came to 
Galashiels in 1873, when he commenced business as a solicitor. 
He carried on his work in connection with the bank till 1878, 
when he resigned the agency, and was succeeded by Frank S. 
Fairbairn. 

Mr Fairbairn belonged to Selkirk, and received his training 
as a solicitor in Edinburgh. When appointed agent for 
the bank, he remove^ to Galashiels, where he commenced 
practice as a writer and solicitor. In 1879 he was appointed 
Procurator-Fiscal for the burgh, and in 1883 clerk and treasurer 
to the Burgh School Board. 

Mr Fairbairn was widely known in connection with the 
Volunteer movement, having been lieutenant in the 2nd Company 
of the Q.E.R.V.B. previous to coming to Galashiels. He 
afterwards joined the local Volunteer corps, where he rose from 
one rank to another till he became Captain and Hon. Major 
in the First Selkirk Border Rifles. 

Mr Fairbairn was for many years secretary to the southern 
division of the Scottish Twenty Club, He was also the 



HISTORY OF GALASHIELS, 495 

Unionist agent in the district for the combined counties of 
Selkirk and Peebles. He died on the i8th February, 1893, and 
was interred in the Eastlands Cemetery with military honours. 
1 88 1 In 1 881 the bank acquired property in High Street, which 

was demolished and the present premises erected. When 
Mr Fairbairn died he was succeeded by John and Donald 
G. Stalker, writers, as joint-agents. Messrs Stalker are sons of 
the late James Stalker, who succeeded Mr Hastie as Baron 
Bailie in 1849. When he died in 1896 his son, Donald G. 
Stalker, was appointed to the office. 



Savings Bank. 

The first institution of this kind in connection with the 
181 5 town was established in the year 181 5. The governor and 
directors of the bank were Dr Douglas, the parish minister, 
and the heritors. George Craig, agent for the Leith Bank, was 
appointed treasurer, and the secretary was Elliot Anderson, 
writer. The scope of its operations was not strictly limited to 
the parish of Galashiels, but included the western portion of the 
parish of Melrose, and the eastern part of the parish of Stow. 

Deposits of not less than five shillings nor exceeding ;^io 
were received, interest being allowed at the best rate which 
could be obtained where the capital was deposited. 

The balance at the credit of the depositors at the end of the 
first year was ;^i50, which gradually increased, till in 1831 it 
had reached the sum of jCyoj. Regarding its further progress 
nothing is known, but, owing to the collapse of the Edinburgh 
1842 and Leith Banking Company in 1842, in which the capital was 
deposited, it came to an untimely and disastrous end. When 
this event occurred, the depositors considered that the governor 
and directors were personally liable to the full extent of their 
deposits, together with the interest which might be due. They 
engaged Robert Haldane, writer, to act on their behalf, but the 
governors disclaimed all responsibility, and intimated their 
intention of resisting any claim that might be preferred against 



496 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

them. Nothing further was done in the matter, and in January 
the following year a dividend of five shillings and sixpence 
per pound was paid to depositors. A further dividend of three 
shillings and a penny farthing was paid, and in 1844 a final 
dividend of one shilling and sevenpence three farthings was 
received, amounting in all to ten shillings and threepence. 

Galashiels Savings Bank. 

1858 This institution was inaugurated in 1858, at a meeting 

held by a number of local gentlemen interested in the welfare of 
those for whose benefit savings banks were originally established. 

Hugh Lees, writer, took a prominent part in the pro- 
ceedings, and at a subsequent meeting, presided over by John 
Cochrane, Chief Magistrate, Mr Lees read over the rules which 
had been prepared by a committee consisting of Messrs Sibbald, 
Anderson, and Adam L. Cochrane. At this meeting Major 
Scott of Gala was appointed governor; James Dalrymple of 
Langlee, deputy governor; and the Chief Magistrate of the 
burgh of Galashiels for the time being president. 

Out of the forty-two gentlemen originally connected with 
the bank, the only survivors are John Cochrane, Willow- 
bush, and Adam L. Cochrane, Kingsknowes; the former still 
continuing as a trustee. 

The first actuary was John Brown, accountant in the Royal 
Bank of Scotland, who held the ofjRce for eleven years. At his 
death in 1869 the deposits amounted to ;^8748, 14s 3d. He was 
succeeded by John Coldwell, clerk to Lees & Stewart, writers. 
1873 On the resignation of Mr Coldwell in 1873, the present actuary, 
John Turnbull, accountant, Royal Bank of Scotland, received the 
appointment. When Mr Turnbull entered upon the duties the 
deposits were ;^i 1,453, ^^^ 7^^ ^"d, under his management, the 
funds have increased to ;^7 1,519, 7s in 1896. 

The progress which this Bank has made affords striking 
evidence of the growth and prosperity of the town, and testifies 
in the strongest manner to the thrifty and provident habits 
of the inhabitants. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 497 

The Bank is certified under the Act of 1863, and is 
managed by trustees and managers, the former being ex-officio 
also managers. Neither trustees nor managers derive any 
personal benefit from the deposits. The funds are invested 
with the Government in name of the trustees, and the interest 
allowed enables the Bank to jiay the expenses of management 
and afford to depositors £2^ 7s 6d per cent. The Bank is 
carried on in premises in High Street. 
1895 The total number of depositors on 20th May, 1895, was 

3202, besides twelve penny banks, thirty charitable societies, 
and four friendly societies. Deposits are limited to sums of not 
less than one shilling and not exceeding ;^30 per annum, till 
such time as they amount to ;^200, including interest. 



FI 



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SECTION VI.— MISCELLANEOUS, 



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CHAPTER I. 



Galashiels Lodge of Freemasons, No. 262. 



1702 



I 



N 1702 a Lodge of Freemasons existed at Haughfoot, a hamlet 
now represented by one solitary dwelling situated near the 
junction of the Lugate and the Gala. Nothing is known 
of the origin of the Lodge, but the brethren who were wont to 
assemble in that solitary place must have been enthusiastic 
members of the craft, as they gathered from Hoppringle, 
Falahill, Stockbridge, Galashiels, Selkirk, and Philiphaugh, 
distances ranging from seven to twenty-six miles. 
1722 On various occasions between the years 1722 and 1729 the 

Lodge met at Galashiels. The last meeting at Haughfoot took 
place on the 27th December, 1738, when it was arranged to 

1739 hold a meeting at Galashiels on 3rd January, 1739. On the 
appointed day twenty members met at Galashiels, who discussed 
the propriety of changing the place of meeting. It was finally 
arranged that the brethren should meet at Galashiels on St 

1740 John's Day. In 1740 the question of a meeting-place was 
again discussed, when it was agreed to meet at Stow on the 
next occasion, and afterwards to meet at Galashiels and Stow 
alternately. When the day arrived for the meeting at Stow, the 
Galashiels contingent were prevented from attending owing to 
the stormy state of the weather. There being no minute 
relating to 1741, it cannot now be determined whether they met 

1742 that year or not, but in 1742 the Masons in Galashiels describe 
themselves in their minute as a separate Lodge, the entry being to 
the following effect, — 

*' Galashiels f /antiaty 20/A, 1742. — The Masons of Galashiels, seperat 
from the brethern at Stow, being met day forsd an rols made and marked 
as follows," — 

Then follow the names of fifteen members. 

501 



50^ HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 

1 753 On the 8th January, 1753, the brethren resident at Selkirk 

were invited to visit Galashiels, as appears by the following 
minute, — 

**The sd day, a comitie of Masons met, and ordered a letter to be 
written to the brethren at Selkirk for them to attend at Galashiels upon the 
seventeen day of the current (month) and ordered the Boxmaster to pay one 
shilling as their expensis/' 

Shortly afterwards it is stated, — 

*' The sd day it is proposed among the Masons of the Lodge at Galashiels 
to have our meeting the next St John's Day at Selkirk." 

In accordance with this resolution, the meetings were held 
1763 alternately at Selkirk and Galashiels till St John's Day in 1763, 
when it was held at Selkirk, and at that date the record ceases. 

Notwithstanding the want of official minutes, there is 
evidence that the Lodge at Galashiels still continued to exist, as 

1794 in 1794 they presented a petition praying to be admitted a 
branch of the Kilwinning Lodge at Peebles, the reason being 
that they could not provide the necessary fees to procure a 
charter. Also, when the foundation stone of the Cloth Hall was 

1795 laid in 1795, it is on record that, — 

''The Corporation with a number of patriotic gentlemen walked in 
procession from the Deacon's to the Cross, and laid the foundation stone with 
the usual ceremony, then returned to Mrs Craig's and spent the remaining 
part of the evening in the most convivial manner." 

While the above statement makes no direct mention of the 
brethren being present, yet the procession, ceremony, and 
manner of spending the remainder of the evening bear such a 
striking resemblance to the usual procedure observed by the 
craft, that there can be little doubt but that the Lodge officiated 
on that occasion. Additional proof of its existence is given in a 
more direct form by an entry in the revenue account of the Cloth 
Hall, where it is recorded that on one occasion five shillings were 
received from the Masons for its use on St John's Day. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 503 

1816 The charter of the Lodge dates from 1816, and in that year 

the constitution was reformed and a friendly society established, 
which lasted till 1836, when it was dissolved and the funds 
divided, each member receiving jC4j 9s. At that date the number 
of original members amounted to fifteen, which was shortly 
afterwards increased to fifty. In 1817 a movement was initiated 
for the erection of a lodge, but the project fell through. In 1823 
the amount of entry money for honorary members was reduced 
from fifteen shillings to eleven shillings. 

1827 On the 2nd February, 1827, ^ Lodge was held at St Boswells 

Green, of which the following is the minute verbatim^ — 

** At a meeting of the Lodge caled this Night to Tak unto conseadrashon 
a leatter from Brother George Knox, Saint Bosels Grean, as to the propray- 
eaty of Going theur to mack four new Bretheren, and the votes being Taken, 
it was Resolved to Go. And that the fees from the New Bretheren Was to be 
Taken and added to the founds of our Lodge, and that the Deputashon shall 
Consist of Five of the Bretheren, and that Each Brother shall be alowd 3s 
Each and 5s for a Cart, and that the Nint of this Month is the Day fixed for 
the Going Down." 

While no mention is made in the Lodge minute-book 
regarding the laying of the foundation stone of the Gas Works 
at Galashiels, it is recorded in the minutes of the Stow Lodge, 
that in the month of June, 1834, arrangements were made to send 
a deputation to assist in the ceremony. There were nine names 
entered as composing the deputation, and, in order to insure their 
attendance, they subscribed to the following agreement, — 

** Should any of the undersigned Deputation fail to come forward, they 
are liable to a fine of three shillings and sixpence for each failer." 

1837 In 1837 ^^^ Lodge laid the foundation stone of Ladhope 

Chapel, and in 1843 it officiated in a similar capacity in 
connection with Ladhope Free Church. It also laid the 
foundation stone of the Galashiels Water Company's works in 
the same year; and, on this occasion, animated by the beneficial 
results that were expected to arise from the introduction of water, 
John Milne, baker, presented each of the brethren with a 
substantial pie. 



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504 HISTORY OF GALASHIELS 

1846 About 1846 the Lodge ceased to pay its dues to the Grand 

Lodge, and in 1851 it assisted in laying the foundation stone 
in connection with Sheddon Park, Kelso. 

1852 Dr Tweedie was elected R.W.M. in 1852, but the members 

had evidently lost all interest in the work, as the following 
explanatory note is inserted in the minutes by the R.W.M., — 

" Since the last meeting as inserted, the Lodge gradually fell off; B. W. 
Paterson, in whose house the Lodge was held, died. The Masonic property, 
contained in the chest of the Lodge, was removed to the R.W.M/s house, 
and up to the date as below, not a single inquiry was made, not a meeting 
requested; so that the Masonry in Galashiels for a period of seven years 
continued Dbad, Dbad, Dead. 1858.*' 

A successful effort to resuscitate the Lodge was made by 
Dr Tweedie shortly afterwards. 

i860 '" September, i860, the Lodge assisted at the laying of the 

foundation stones of the Public Hall and Corn Exchange. In 
1 86 1 an attempt was made to re-establish the benefit society, 
which proved a failure; but the Lodge continued to flourish 
under the reign of Adam Thomson, R.W.M. 

1876 ^" ^^7^ ^ movement was commenced for the purpose of 

providing a Masonic Hall, and the brethren formed themselves 
into a limited liability company with a capital of ^^3000 in 
shares of ;^i each. The ceremony of laying the foundation 
stone of the hall was performed in the presence of a large 
gathering of the inhabitants of the town, and about thirty 
Lodges were represented on the occasion. The proceedings were 
opened with prayer by the Chaplain. Brother Adam Thomson 
then presented a silver trowel to Brother Inglis of Torsonce, 
Provincial Grand Master for Peebles and Selkirk shires. The 
stone, within which had been deposited the usual documents, 
&c., was laid with all Masonic honours, and at the conclusion of 
the ceremony the brethren, to the number of 200, dined in the 
Public Hall, Brother Inglis presiding. 

Since that date the records of the Lodge are entirely con- 
fined to routine work, possessing no interest to the general 
public. 



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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 



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The following list comprises the Right Worshipful Masters 
of the Lodge since 1816, — 



1816-17, Robert Weir. 
1 8 18- 19, John Paterson. 
1820-21, John Hislop. 
1822-23, James Stirling. 
1824-25, Andrew Hislop. 
1826-27, Thomas Clapperton. 
1828-29, James Riddell. 
1830, William Wood. 
1831-34, James Riddell. 
1835-36, Henry Beveridge. 

1837, Robert Oliver. 

1838, Robert Weir. 

1839, Alexander Mitchell. 

1840, James Riddell. 
1841-42, John B. Weir. 
1843-44, Alexander Mitchell. 
1845, Thomas Laidlaw. 
1846-47, Robert Turnbull. 
1848, Robert Weir. 
1849-51, Robert Oliver. 



1852-59, Dr A. C. Tweedie. 
i860, William Fraser. 
i860, Peter Sanderson. 

1 86 1, Thomas Finlay. 

1862, George Gray. 
1863-65, Adam Thomson. 
1866-69, Robert Scott. 
1870, George Gray. 
1871-72, James D. Nisbet. 
i^73> John Ronald. 
1874-77, Adam Thomson. 
1878, James Hepburn. 
1879-80, William Liddle. 
1881-83, Andrew Crosbie. 
1884, Robert Hogg. 
1885-86, William Lawson. 

1887, Edward Pratt Evatt. 

1888, Robert Berry. 

1889, Stephen Oliver. 
1890-96, William Lawson. 



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CHAPTER II. 

The Galashiels Subscription Library. 

'HE first library in the town was founded by Dr Douglas 
1797 I in 1797, and was termed the Galashiels Subscription 
Library. The first minute-book is lost; the first entry 
in that yet existing is dated 20th November, 1827. The rules 
provided that members had to pay an entrance fee of five 
shillings, besides an annual subscription of four shillings. 
Those falling in arrears for eighteen months were expelled, and 
fines were levied upon those who failed to attend the annual 
meeting, or who allowed a non-member the use of a book 
belonging to the Library. No books hostile to revealed religion 
or of an immoral tendency, nor those treating on divinity, law, 
physic, or politics could be acquired unless ordered by a 
majority of members at a general meeting. The Library was 
open every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, between the 
hours of nine and ten, morning; two and three, afternoon; and 
six to eight in the evening. 

The Library was originally kept in the Old Town, and 
William Hislop was librarian. When it was located there. Sir 
Walter Scott was a frequent visitor, and, in answer to some 
question regarding it, David Thomson thus replied, — 

** We hae nae mony books in vogue, 
As youMl see by the catalogue. 
In truth our funds are rather spare, 
At present we can do nae mair, 
We're ruined quite in oor finances 
Wi' your bewitching, famed romances." 

On the removal of the Hislops to Bridge Street^ William 
Gill was appointed librarian, and the books were transferred 
to Overhaugh Street. It would have been interesting to 

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HISTORY OF GALASHIELS. 507 

learn the nature and class of books in demand in the early 
years of the Library. The first mentioned list of new books 

1827 occurs in 1827, when the following works were acquired: — 
The London Mechanics' Magazine^ the third volume oi Byron s 
Works y Tales of a Grandfather^ Chalmers Pictures of Scotland^ 
Travels and Voyages of Columbus, Nicholson' s Mechanic^ and 
Gills History of Greece. What remuneration the librarian 

1837 received is not stated till 1837, when it was fixed at ;^5, ids 
per annum. In 1840 Mr Gill resigned on account of the 
members calling upon him for books at any time that suited 
their own convenience. Finding no one willing to undertake 
the duty, the committee requested Mr Gill to continue in office, 
which he did on condition that his salary was raised to ;^7. The 
members of committee were William Kemp, president; Robert 
Paterson, James Stirling, Robert Traquair, James Brown, 
Thomas Gill, and William Tait, clerk. 

1843 In 1843 there were 150 members, and in 1847 the salary of 

the librarian was increased to £\o^ 13s. In 1847 Mr Gill 
again resigned, and Edward Gray, painter, High Street, 
fulfilled the duties for the sum of £% annually. Owing 
to a decrease in membership, the committee decided to admit 
readers on payment of one shilling and sixpence quarterly. The 
magazines read in 1850 were The Dublin University Magazine^ 
Blackwood s, Taifs, Edinburgh Review^ and Hoggs Instructor. 
There were at this time one hundred and two members and 
thirty-nine readers. Notwithstanding the large additions made 
to the number of books, the membership declined, till in 

1854 1854 ^^ h^d fallen to eighty-four and sixteen readers. With the 
view of attracting members, the entry money was reduced to two 

^859 shillings and sixpence, but this proved of no avail. In 1859 the 
committee resolved to wind up the Library affairs and divide the 
books, all members in arrears being debarred from participating 
in the division. The number of books amounted to 3000, 
which were put up in lots corresponding to the number of 
members. A ballot took place, and the Library was dissolved, a 
considerable number